Bears to play perennial champ Patriots

11 years ago

Local soccer teams out to win regional titles

Bears to play perennial champ Patriots

By Kevin Sjoberg
Sports Reporter

    With Saturday’s playoff victory over Jonesport-Beals, the Bears’ varsity soccer team has entered unchartered territory.

Contributed photos/jMavor Photography

    DREW SOTOMAYOR of the Easton Bears goes up against  Washburn’s Justin Davis player for a head ball during last Wednesday’s match in Easton. The Bears will host Bangor Christian today at 1 p.m. for the Eastern Maine Class D title.


    SLIDING SAVE — Tim Tarr of the Ashland Hornets saves a shot attempt by Shead’s Michael Moore during last Wednesday’s Eastern Maine Class D quarterfinal matchup played in Ashland. Shead prevailed in double overtime, 2-1.


    For the first time in school history, an Easton soccer team will be playing for an Eastern Maine championship.
    The undefeated and No. 1-seeded Bears will host second-ranked Bangor Christian in the Class D regional finals this afternoon at 1 p.m.
    Coach Ryan Shaw is excited about taking on the Patriots on Easton’s home field and has plenty of respect for his opponent, which has captured the last four state championships, has won 59 matches in a row and has not trailed in a game since October of 2010.
    “Bangor Christian has been the standard in Class D soccer for a number of years. They play with a good pace, are excellent on set plays, and do not allow you many opportunities,” Shaw said. “We know we have to defend them out high or they will get opportunities and we have worked on that all year.”
    Shaw assured that his team will be ready to play when gametime rolls around.
    “We want to dictate the tempo of the game. We can move the ball as well as anyone and we are pretty solid all over the field. Our physical conditioning is better than it has ever been,” he said.
    Shaw, who coached Hampden to an Eastern Maine title in 2004, hopes that playing at home will give his Bears a huge advantage.
    “Fortunately, they are the ones that have to make the bus trip and play on an unfamiliar field,” he said. “It certainly won’t be easy, but we can do it if we are focused and play our game the way we can.”
    Easton took care of the Jonesport-Beals in the semifinals, 5-1. The Bears mounted good pressure throughout the first half which results in three unanswered goals. The first came courtesy of Logan Halvorson off an assist by his brother, Cody, 11:47 into the match.
    The other two came 37 seconds apart later in the half, with Cody Halvorson notching the first one unassisted and Logan Halvorson scoring on a breakaway off a nice serve from his older brother for the three-goal lead.
    “We moved the ball real well and created a ton of opportunities,” Shaw said. “They brought the kind of intensity needed to be successful.”
    The Royals countered with a goal early in the second half, but Easton answered with a couple quick strikes as Cody Halvorson netted a penalty kick and Drew Sotomayor tallied off a Logan Halvorson helper.
    The Bears had beaten Washburn in last Wednesday’s quarterfinal match, 5-2.
    The brother combination of Drew and Ian Sotomayor had a big day with each scoring a pair of goals, with Cody Halvorson getting the other on another penalty kick. The Bears jumped out to a 4-0 lead at intermission before the Beavers’ Alex Pelletier and Cameron Bragg cut the lead in half with goals which came in the first six minutes of the second half. However, they were held off the scoreboard for the remainder of the match.
    Jake Flewelling made eight saves for Easton, while Jarrett Olson collected 13 for the Beavers, which ended up with a 6-7-3 mark.
    The Ashland Hornets were beaten by Shead in last Wednesday’s quarterfinal, 2-1, in a game that wasn’t decided until approximately 5-1/2 minutes to play in the second overtime period. Jarrett Beaulier had given Ashland the early lead, but the visitors from Eastport tied it up early in the second half before winning it in sudden death. Coach Mark Stanley’s Hornets, the No. 3 seed in the division, ended up with a 7-5-3 overall mark.
    Fort Fairfield, which had pulled off a preliminary game upset over Southern Aroostook, fell to Jonesport-Beals in the quarters, 2-1, in another match that came down to penalty kicks. Johnny Theriault had the Tiger goal, which tied the score with 23:50 to go in regulation.
    The Tigers of coach John Ala, the No. 12 seed, finished the year at 5-8-3.