To say the Presque Isle girls soccer team is on a hot streak is an understatement.
The Wildcats have won 13 consecutive games since an early loss to Ellsworth, and coach Ralph Michaud’s top-seeded club will take that momentum into today’s 5:15 p.m. Eastern Maine Class B final against second-ranked Winslow at the Johnson Complex.
In other Eastern Maine finals today, No. 2 Brunswick faces undefeated Waterville in Class A, third-seeded Madawaska visits No. 1 Orono in a 1:30 p.m. Class C clash while defending Class D champ Ashland, the No. 2 seed, plays at No. 1 Southern Aroostook of Dyer Brook at 1.
Class B: The Wildcats are led by the 1-2 punch of seniors Kayla Legassie and Sarah Porter. Legassie has 69 career goals after scoring one in a semifinal victory over Ellsworth.
Presque Isle does have the advantage of their familiarity with the FieldTurf on its home field while not having to make a long trek south.
“It’s nice to be home, that’s why you fight so hard during the regular season, to get home field advantage,” Michaud said.
PI’s other key players include junior goalie Kelsey Park and freshmen forwards Chelsea Nickerson and Kayla Richards.
These teams met in the 2004 EM final, with the Black Raiders winning to start a run of four consecutive regional titles.
Coach Scott Wood’s club also features scoring balance with Kasey Paquette, Christina Massey and Arian Kumlangngam among the top threats.
“I anticipate a tough battle,” Michaud said.
Raiders goalie Beth Fisher comes has posted shutouts in playoff victories over Erskine Academy of South China and Medomak Valley of Waldoboro.
Class C: Coach Cid Dyjak’s Orono Red Riots haven’t been to the regional final since 1996 while Madawaska returns for the first time since 2005.
Coach Dan Cyr’s Owls feature one of Class C’s top scoring threats in junior striker Susan Lavertu.
“We haven’t played them during the season so we don’t know that much about them,” said Dyjak.
Sophomore Orono goal-keeper Elizabeth Fox has posted shutouts in playoff wins over Houlton and George Stevens of Blue Hill.
The Riots’ offensive catalysts are Alex Crocker, Julie Normand and Ruth Mares.
“We know they’re quite technical, they move the ball very well, they’ve got a good, solid defensive nucleus,” said Cyr.
Senior goalie Stephanie Nadeau has been sound for the Owls in the postseason, while classmates Kaylee Cyr and Kristy Morneault have been solid on the back line, along with freshman Nicole A. Cyr.
Seniors Danielle Gendreau and Kallie Pelletier have made contributions up front.
Class D: Southern Aroostook and Ashland are familiar foes, as these teams split during the regular season.
Coach Peter Belskis’ Ashland team has experience on its side as the defending EM champ.
Senior goalie Taylor Baker has nine shutouts, while Brooke Labelle, Macie Pelkey, Suzie Poulin, Anna Paradis and Crystal Cook lead the offense.
“I expect it to be a very close, very tough game,” said Belskis. “Both teams are very evenly matched.”
The Warriors have a stout goaltender in Emily Cummings, who spearheaded a semifinal shutout victory over Katahdin of Stacyville.
Southern Aroostook’s top scorers include sisters Liz and Evangeline Goodall, Brittany Charette, Rachelle Nadeau and sisters Jasmine and Janel Rockwell.
Class A: Waterville is aiming for its second consecutive appearance in the state final.
Coach Ian Wilson’s Purple Panthers boast one of the state’s top scorers in Jordan Pellerin, who has amassed 45 goals this year, along with Stephanie Whitten, who is nearing 30 assists.
“The girls just complement each other so well,” said Wilson.
Waterville defeated Brunswick 2-0 in the KVAC title game recently.
“They’re a team that’s a lot like us, they really try to possess the ball,” said Wilson of Brunswick.
Waterville has gotten solid play in goal from Taylor Hart while Brunswick’s top offensive threat is Allie Walton.