WINSLOW — If you’re in the business of predicting how Class B North boys soccer standings are going to fall out this season, then Saturday’s 3-0 Winslow victory over rival Waterville should give you plenty of pause.

The Purple Panthers entered the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference match occupying the top spot in the regional rankings, enjoyed more of the possession throughout the 80 minutes and created plenty of top-shelf scoring chances.

The only thing standing in the way of Waterville winning a game it likely deserved was an opportunistic Winslow team, led by senior Isaac Lambrecht’s two goals. The Black Raiders (2-1-0) capitalized on the few forays they made deep into the attacking third, backed by the team’s first clean sheet of the young season.

The long and the short of it is this: Winslow wasn’t three goals better than Waterville on this particular match day, and Class B North might represent this type of odd parity all autumn long.

“Sometimes it doesn’t go your way,” said Waterville coach Kerry Serdjenian, whose team dropped to 2-2-0. “There’s no excuses. I can’t think of one place on the field where we didn’t play well or didn’t hustle. They earned all three of their goals, so even if we would have finished some percentage of our good opportunities, it still would have been 3-something. Their three goals were good. Sometimes you get the lucky bounce. It’s a game of inches.”

How differently could things have gone in this one?

Lambrecht opened the scoring in the 12th minute, but Waterville pushed back almost immediately. In the 27th minute, Adam Livshits’ clear to Jay Brock sent Brock through toward goal. With Winslow’s J.J. Carey off his line to challenge, Brock punched his follow-up chance on frame, where it was cleared out of harm’s way by Black Raider junior center back Austin Soucy.

“They had speed and good balls in the air,” Soucy said. “We just had to mark that down.”

Five minutes later, Eban Charles got on the end of a Kaden Works corner kick, but his deft one-touch just dipped over the crossbar.

Waterville came out the better side to open the second half, too, but saw the deficit double when Levi Olin’s restart from the right side found the noggin of freshman Landen Gillis for a second Winslow goal.

Lambrecht’s seventh goal of the season in the 70th minute cinched it.

On a team with only three players returning from last season’s regional championship squad, Lambrecht and Gillis have developed an immediate chemistry which is leading to goals.

“I think just playing in the summer games together and getting to know each other better has really helped,” Lambrecht said. “I think we’re going in the right direction. We knew Waterville would be ready to play and it would be a good team in the Heal points if we beat them.”

Armed with an early lead, Winslow could afford to drop into a more defensive shell throughout. They let Waterville win the majority of the 50-50 balls in the midfield, but with central defenders Soucy and Chris Phair on their game, the Panthers turned those wins into only four shots on target for the match.

“I think it was more the way the game ended up being played than it was by design,” Winslow coach Aaron Wolfe said of the team’s defensive effort. “I don’t think we played our best game, but we capitalized on our chances. I wasn’t necessarily pleased with our play, but I was pleased with the result.”

Carey, a sophomore, made four saves, all in the second half, to post the first shutout of his career.

The teams will meet again Oct. 5 in Waterville.

Travis Barrett — 621-5621

[email protected]

Twitter: @TBarrettGWC

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