With two point-worthy games remaining, the Monmouth boys soccer team can still get into the Western Maine Class C playoffs with a victory. It won’t be easy.

The Mustangs were 5-6-0 before Tuesday’s game against Winthrop with games remaining at Hall-Dale on Thursday and home against Dirigo next Tuesday.

“I don’t think we can play with Hall-Dale,” Monmouth coach Joe Fletcher said. “They’re a talented team.”

The Mustangs lost 4-1 to Hall-Dale earlier this season. They could have helped themselves with a win against Mt. Abram last week but lost 1-0 to the Roadrunners which put them in the ninth and final tournament spot.

“It was a hard-fought game,” Fletcher said. “We had chances, didn’t capitalize. We had one mistake and they capitalized.”

Monmouth did play without injured starters Ethan Bickford and Sherman Spears but both are back in the lineup.

On Saturday, the Mustangs packed in their defense against unbeaten St. Dominic and were locked in a scoreless tie for 30 minutes. They may employ the same strategy against Hall-Dale although the St. Dom’s game ended in a 4-0 loss.

“After a while I decided to come out of that lockdown,” Fletcher said.

They have yet to play Dirigo (8-3-0) which has only lost to St. Dom’s, Hall-Dale and Lisbon.

“We might be able to give Dirigo a run for their money if we’re healthy and we play well,” Fletcher said. “That’s an enormous game for us.”

• • •

The Hall-Dale boys were 9-1-1 prior to Tuesday’s game at Wiscasset. They still have a shot at playing in the Mountain Valley Conference championship game Oct. 19 at St. Dom’s in Auburn.

The participants are determined by overall record and three teams — St. Dom’s, Lisbon and Hall-Dale — are battling for two spots. Hall-Dale lost 1-0 to St. Dom’s and played to a 1-1 tie with Lisbon.

“We’re improving by leaps and bonds,” Hall-Dale coach Andy Haskell said. “We’re much more flexible and we’re getting a lot of scoring from a lot of different people.”

The Bulldogs have shown depth off the bench, too, starting with striker Ethan Longfellow who has scored six goals.

“He’s provided a boost of energy,” Haskell said. “Wyatt Rush has done a nice job and Ezra Jones. We’ve had players out due to injury and these complementary players have been able to help us.”

• • •

The Richmond boys grabbed the top spot from Greenville in Western Class D with a 3-2 double overtime victory over the Lakers on Friday. The teams played to a 3-3 tie earlier in the season.

“It had all the playoff implications riding on it,” Richmond coach Joe Scribellito said. “I think both teams played extra hard. Our goal this year was the keep home-field advantage.”

The Bobcats (9-2-1) have won five straight since losing to Class C power Waynflete. They’ve scored 38 goals while allowing nine.

They trailed Greenville 2-1 in the first half before sophomore Nate Tribbett tied the game. Tribbett scored all three goals, including the game winner on a rebound with 30 seconds left in the second overtime.

“The reason for that is the kid does not panic,” Scribellito said. “A lot of times that 6-12 yard shot usually fly over the crossbar. He just came in and collected it. He didn’t even hesitate.”

Senior striker Peter Lorbeski leads the team in goals with 14 while senior Kade Strout is the team’s defensive leader.

“Those two guys complement each other,” Scribellito said.

• • •

The defending Class D state champion Richmond girls are overwhelming opponents with their depth. The ran their record to 8-1-0 with Friday’s 3-0 win against Greenville. Richmond coach Troy Kendrick is using 18 or 19 players a game.

“It’s been a big factor all season,” he said. “We try to focus on conditioning, but I also try to establish a good substitution pattern. I think that shows up in a lot of games, especially in the second half.”

Senior Danica Hurley leads the team with 21 goals, while many of her teammates have contributed as well. Both Noell Acord and Sadie Gosse have seven goals while several other have scored three or four.

“We’ve done a good job defensively,” Kendrick said. “But the best defense is a good offense. We’re winning midfield and put pressure on (the opponent’s) defense.”

The Bobcats have four remaining games including one Saturday at defending Class C champion Sacopee Valley and another Monday against Calvary Chapel of Class D East.

“It’s good timing to slide into the postseason with a couple of challenging games,” Kendrick said.

Gary Hawkins — 621-5638

[email protected]


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