Audrey Fletcher had a hat trick for the Monmouth girls soccer team in an easy win over Dirigo on Tuesday. That in and of itself wasn’t a milestone for the senior striker, but it did set the benchmark by which all future Mustangs will be judged.

Fletcher’s third goal of the day was the 100th of her career, making her the first player in program history to reach the century mark.

“It doesn’t happen very often, so I’m glad she’s getting some recognition for it,” Monmouth coach Gary Trafton said.

Monmouth is a perfect 11-0-0 on the season, cemented in the No. 1 spot in Class C South with three games remaining and the only unbeaten team in the region.

Part of that success, clearly, comes from Fletcher’s play. She leads the team with 21 goals, but Trafton said her ability to involve others has been more significant to the overall picture than any of her individual goals.

“Every team is packing it in on us, putting eight or nine girls in the box,” Trafton said. “Your touches have to be really good, and you have to be patient against that. With everybody packing it in, we’ve been practicing for that. That’s what’s led us to this.”

And, Fletcher’s evolution as a true striker and target player, not just a goal-scoring tornado.

“She’s grown,” Trafton said. “She’s more patient with the ball and not rushing things. She played some travel soccer, and she’s playing at a higher level this year. That’s made a huge difference. She’s more composed with the ball, knowing what to do in different situations, knowing that she doesn’t have to do it all herself.”

Fletcher added a 101st goal to her career in a win over Buckfield on Thursday. She previously passed older sister Hannah Fletcher’s career goal-scoring mark of 86.

 

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The Akira Warren as striker experiment is working out nicely for the Hall-Dale boys soccer team this season.

A midfielder through the first three years of his career, Warren has been moved up top this fall and the position change is working quite nicely for the senior despite some early reservations on his behalf. Warren scored twice in a win over Mt. Abram on Wednesday, his 23rd and 24th goals of the season, to move him within 10 of the program’s record for a season.

“In previous seasons, I think I had less than 10 goals each season,” Warren said. “I think Coach is surprised, too. I know he wants me to break the record, but I’m not sure if I can do that.

First-year head coach Jesse Rowe heaped plenty of praise on Warren, especially has Hall-Dale’s quick attacking game has led to a 10-0-1 record and the current top spot in Class C South.

“Akira just keeps delivering time after time after time,” Rowe said. “I hope we come at teams like a southern team.”

Josh Nadeau, Camden Adams and Ian Stebbins are among several Bulldogs who present significant scoring opportunities for Hall-Dale on any given day, during any given stretch of attacking play.

Those numbers have made Warren’s transition to striker much easier.

“It makes me feel like I’m not responsible for all the goals,” Warren said. “We have a few guys with over 10 goals, too. I don’t get all the attention from the defenders, because they have to cover the other guys, to. I think that definitely helps me.”

 

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The Cony boys may only have three wins this season, but the Rams are a much-improved side. Having only lost four of its 11 games to date, Cony (3-4-4) is holding onto the ninth and final tournament spot in Class A North with three games remaining.

The Rams have one one-goal loss and two two-goal losses on their record. They’ve been in every game, something that couldn’t always be said in the last couple of seasons, and it’s clear the team is feeding of the belief of first-year head coach James Gay.

“They have a tendency to not believe in themselves,” Gay said. “That’s the piece we’ve been failing to kind of get to. They walk in, they commit to defense, and then they’re on their heels and get tired. I keep telling them they need to get out on the attacking side, and they’re resistant to do that because they don’t want to get beat.

“I feel like they’re maybe trying not to lose for me. It makes such a different if we step out to pressure, and I think they’ve started to see that.”

Cony’s last-gasp overtime win over Mt. Blue on Tuesday vaulted the Rams into a playoff spot for the first time in 2019.

Logan Butler was the hero, and he’s been at the heart of what the team has done this season, along with fellow senior Simon McCormick.

“I just want them to play hard,” Gay said. “I told them, ‘I’m getting frustrated because you guys are right there and I believe in you, but I think sometimes I believe in you more than you believe in you.’ You fall in love with the kids and you care about them, and you want to see them succeed and achieve the maximum potential that they have. I see something in them.

“They’ve been consistent and they’ve been solid, and I guess that’s good.”

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