BLUE HILL—Sometimes a game comes down to the final seconds. The score is tied 1-1 and overtime is in the air. And then, with the clock running out, a penalty against one team leads to a kick from the sidelines and a clutch goal to win the game.
For the Eagles varsity girls soccer team, that goal, scored with less than seven seconds on the clock, was all the sweeter because of the victory it signaled over the Bucksport Golden Bucks. The two teams had met seven straight times over the last four seasons, with each match ending in a tie until now.
“The talk at halftime was do we really want to win this game or do we really want to lose to these people,” Coach Steve Bemiss said in a post-game interview. “There’s a very strong Hatfield-McCoy’s between the teams.”
The October 3 win on the Bucksport home field kicked the Eagles into third place in the Heal Point Standings and a 7-1-1 season record. The team had lost to Orono 1-0 two days earlier, and tied the fourth-ranked Bucksport 1-1 the week before.
The match started tough, with both teams defending strong at the goal, before Bucksport scored on a fast kick close to the net with 5:23 left in the first period.
“I think we put up a fairly good defense in the first half but we were a little bit lax in how close we covered their players,” Bemiss said.
The Eagles answered early in the second period, when Mariah Reinke penetrated the Golden Bucks defense off an assist by Hattie Slayton for 1-1.
A strike by Bucksport deep into the net’s corner drew an offsides penalty, keeping the score tied until the last seconds. A on-field penalty against Bucksport gave possession to the Eagles. Morgan Dauk kicked in deep from the sidelines close enough to the goal for Lindsay Nevin to strike past Golden Bucks goalkeeper Bree Coombs for the win. Coombs had saved 10 out of 18 shots from the Eagles, the same numbers as Eagle goalkeeper Bess MacArthur.
“Bess had a couple of great saves,” Bemiss said. “There were a few people who showed me what they could do…Mazie [Smallidge] did a heck of a job, and center defender Tatiana ‘the Bear’ Heggestad. Sweeper Julianna Allen—she strikes balls that you shouldn’t even get to.”
“We were a little lucky, but I think we deserved to win.”