WATERVILLE — The final score may not reflect it, yet Tuesday’s 25-2 loss to Gardiner at Thomas College was a step in the right direction for the Erskine Academy boys lacrosse team.

“We had some moments. There’s a lot we have to work on,” Eagles coach Mike Foley said. “We put in a couple different defenses, different offenses and to be honest I’m still trying to figure out who our players are. We’ve gotten everyone some playing time to see what they can do.”

While it is still a work in progress for Erskine, Tuesday’s game will go down as a key one as the program’s first contest at the varsity level. Unfortunately for the Eagles, it came against one of the more established programs in Eastern Class B and the Tigers did not wait long to put that experience to good use.

Josh Caldwell put Gardiner up just 2 minutes, 38 seconds into the contest off a sweeping shot from distance, and less than 1 minute later Michael Poirier doubled the Tigers’ advantage after finishing off a nice feed from Walker Norton.

Chase Begin’s goal with 7:48 to play in the opening quarter pushed Gardiner’s advantage to 3-0, yet the Eagles responded with the program’s first varsity goal when Max Pacholski — who had both of Erskine’s scores — finished off a pass from Logan Poulin.

That would be as close as Erskine would get, though, as Gardiner closed the quarter with six straight goals to more or less decide the outcome. Begin and Poirier each had five goals to pace the Tigers, while Caldwell and Norton scored three goals apiece.


For Gardiner, the team was happy to get the win but coach K.C. Johnson said his team still has a ways to go in order to establish itself as one of the teams to beat in Eastern B.

“It is what it is. We’re still growing as a team,” Johnson said. “We’ve got some holes to fill, attack is one for us. We’re getting better.”

The Tigers do not have another game scheduled for this week, yet will certainly be in store for a challenge next week. They will take on Maranacook/Winthrop Wednesday, April 29 and follow that up with a trip to Morse Saturday, May 2.

“It will be interesting. Not sure we’re that disciplined yet, we’re still young in some spots,” Johnson said. “We’re not super deep but we’ll hold our own. The big guys will step up when they need to.”

Erskine, meanwhile, will simply look to improve in all facets, from the technical aspects of the game to even the simpler things like protocol for pregame introductions.

“Coming in we didn’t know how to line up so there’s a lot we have to work on,” Foley said. “They have a solid background, it’s a lot of small things that we have to go over as well. They’re working really hard and they’re getting to where they need to be.”

Evan Crawley — 621-5640

[email protected]

Twitter: @Evan_Crawley

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