BY MICHAEL HOFFER
Gorham's Erin Castonguay battles for the ball with Grace Pettingill of Scarborough during Tuesday's game in Scarborough. Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Staff Photographer Buy this Photo
SCARBOROUGH—There usually isn’t much separation when the longtime girls’ soccer rivals from Scarborough and Gorham get together.
Tuesday evening at the Kippy Mitchell Sports Complex, there was absolutely none.
The three-time reigning Class A South champion Red Storm played host to the always-tough Rams, who won at Scarborough a year ago, but 90 minutes couldn’t produce a single goal.
Each team had a few looks at the net, but wound up frustrated as the Red Storm are now 1-0-1 on the season, while Gorham is 1-1-1.
“That’s typically how it is when we play,” said longtime Scarborough coach Mike Farley. “In this type of game, you’ll only get a couple chances and you have to make the most of it.”
Too close to call
Scarborough has won three straight Class A South titles, but each time fell short of bringing home the Gold Ball, due to Camden Hills, which won last year’s state game, 2-1.
This fall, the Red Storm aren’t playing for any hardware and have a lot of new faces, but figure to be very strong yet again.
Scarborough opened its season Friday with a 2-1 win at Bonny Eagle.
Gorham, meanwhile, got to the semifinals last season, where they lost, 1-0 (3-0 on penalty kicks), to Cheverus. The Rams beat visiting Bonny Eagle in their opener, 1-0, then fell at Windham, 3-2, in overtime, Saturday.
Last year, Gorham came to Scarborough and upset the Red Storm, 2-1, behind goals from Lauren Fotter and Jill Nichols, to snap Scarborough’s 27-game regular season win streak.
Tuesday, goals were nowhere to be found.
The Rams’ first of two good chances came in the game’s 16th minute, when sophomore Faith Connolly nicely handled a bouncing ball in the box and shot on Red Storm junior goalkeeper Savannah Beaulieu, who came up huge, making a difficult save to keep the game scoreless.
Scarborough tried to get dynamic sophomore Ali Mokriski free, but Gorham’s defense smothered her and Rams’ junior goalkeeper Rachael Gross was aggressive coming out of the cage to get to through-balls before Mokriski could.
Freshman Lana Djuranovic, junior Natalie Bilodeau and junior Una Djuranovic all managed first half shots for the hosts, but Gross made the saves and it was 0-0 at halftime.
Gorham threatened to take the lead early in the second half, but a cross from senior Olivia Michaud was broken up at the last moment and a long, low shot off the foot of junior Madison Michaud was saved by Beaulieu.
After the mid-half sanitation break, the Red Storm were energized and hoped to break the ice, but a shot from Lana Djuranovic was saved by Gross and a Mokriski rush was broken up in the box.
After Fotter missed just wide for the Rams, Scarborough senior Grace Pettingill got the ball in an optimal position in the box, but her shot was blocked at the last moment by a Gorham defender.
With 2:26 on the clock, Una Djuranovic’s shot was saved by Gross.
With 1:43 remaining, Rams junior Erin Castonguay broke up a feed to Red Storm junior Evelyn Boardman at the last second and with 24 seconds on the clock, a Boardman bid was saved by Gross, sending the contest to overtime.
There, each team had one look, but came up empty.
In the first of the two five-minute, “sudden victory” OT sessions, Scarborough earned a corner kick, but it was easily cleared by Gorham.
Then, with 1:47 left in the second OT, Olivia Michaud had the second and final good chance for the Rams, when she took a pass and got some room on the right side of the box, but after making Beaulieu come out to challenge, Michaud shot just wide of the far post.
The clock ran out from there and the teams settled for the 0-0 draw.
“We had a couple moments when we were sleepwalking,” Farley said. “It’s a good lesson that if you have a mental lapse, you can be exposed. All it takes is one mis-step, or one swing and miss at a ball and it rolls to a player in the wrong spot. The strength of their team is center-back, midfield. We had to be precise with our passes. We did a better job attacking down the wing in the second half.
“We’ve lost a lot from last year. We had three All-State players. This is a whole new team. Even the older players haven’t played much at the varsity level. We’ll have growing pains. We’re nowhere near as deep as we’ve typically been. We’ll have moments we’re not perfect, so we’ll have to dodge bullets.”
Scarborough had a 7-4 shots advantage and got four saves from Beaulieu, while Gorham took two corner kicks to the Red Storm’s one and got seven saves from Gross.
“I was happy with our effort at the end, but we’re struggling to finish,” said Rams coach Jeanne Zarrilli. “We play tough defensively. We didn’t have a summer to work the kinks out. I’m a little frustrated with the final third. I’m not sure either goalie got tested fully. We don’t necessarily man-mark one player because Scarborough moves so well off the ball. If we mark one player, another player moves in. They’re always good and always quick. We love to play each other. We always want to win. It’s always a great game between us.”
See you Monday
The teams play for a second time Monday in Gorham.
The Rams first return home to meet Cheverus in a playoff rematch Friday.
Scarborough is idle until Monday.
“Our schedule is really good,” Farley said. “We don’t have a postseason, but almost every game we have is like a playoff game. We have no easy games. We have nice breaks in-between games. For us, it’s a building year anyway. We’re in the mode of getting our younger players better and sending our older players out as a winning side.”