WINSLOW — Saturday morning’s Class B North preliminary round playoff game was just 10 minutes old, and already the Medomak Valley girls soccer team had dug itself a hole too deep to climb out of.

Sarah Guimond scored in the 10th minute and third-seeded Winslow was an illustration in playing lockdown soccer at Kennebec Savings Bank Field, cruising to a 2-0 win over the Panthers en route to a regional quarterfinal matchup with No. 6 Waterville on Tuesday.

Winslow (12-2-1) beat rival Waterville twice in a seven-day span during the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference regular season.

“We played our game and went forward,” Winslow back Sarah Stevens said. “We have a strong midfield and strong ‘D,’ and we know what our game is.”

The final scoreline did little to indicate just how wide the gap was between the two sides on Saturday.

Medomak (3-11-1) generated only one shot across 80 minutes — on a 40-yard chance that bounded in easily for Black Raider goalkeeper Broghan Gagnon to handle in the 35th minute. The Panthers, who scored only 11 goals all season, had all they could do simply to curb the Winslow pressure in their own third of the pitch.

By the time Ashley Quirion added a second Winslow goal in the 74th minute, the final outcome had been determined.

“They didn’t score a lot of goals all year long, so you hoped that that nice early one was going to be the one,” Winslow coach Steve Bodge said. “I have a lot of confidence in my defense, they’ve played well all year long. But that second one always feels better than that first one, right?”

Defensively, the Black Raiders were able to start the attack by locking down the midfield line.

“It’s a focus. We’re willing to send a fullback to try and help keep that locked up,” Bodge said. “We like to get the ball to the corner, attack from the edges, and work to the middle. If they can’t get the ball out — the more chances we get, we’ll take it.”

It was a sign of things to come right off the opening tap, when Winslow was able to win the ball in the midfield time after time, playing the ball wide for dangerous crosses for runners into open channels in the 18-yard box. Guimond’s goal came after a Sara Doughty bid from 20 yards out — her curling offering to the far post turned out by Kayla Donlin (four saves) but right back into traffic.

After three unsuccessful attempts to clear the ball by Medomak defenders, Guimond buried the ball in the net for a 1-0 lead.

“It was important. When we get off to a fast start and can start hurrying, we get all the pressure on our side,” Guimond said. “Keeping the ball in their end takes them out of their focus, and that always helps.”

Winslow likely should have had more before the halftime whistle, but credit to Medomak for limiting more chaos.

The second half was a lazily-played affair for most of the 40 minutes, as neither team registered a shot through the hour mark. As the Panthers wore down, and the Black Raiders took advantage of a few of their desperate attempts to counter-attack, Quirion redirected a shot off a Medomak back, wrong-footing Donlin for the final nail in the coffin.

“That took a lot of pressure off,” Guimond said.

Travis Barrett — 621-5621

[email protected]

Twitter: @TBarrettGWC

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