The Fort Kent Warriors proudly display their Class C North regional championship plaque after defeating Washington Academy 2-1 in Presque Isle. Credit: Jessica Potila / St. John Valley Times

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — The Fort Kent Warrior boys held onto their top spot in the standings and are headed to the state finals after edging out No. 2 Washington Academy 2-1 to win the Class C North regional championship Wednesday in Presque Isle.

“It’s always a great feeling to go to states and represent The County on that level,” Warriors Coach Kalusha Kotes said. 

Warrior Kaden Theriault struck first with an unassisted goal midway through the first half. Unai Reino of Washington Academy soon tied things up, also with an unassisted goal. James LaMarre registered the final goal of the game before the half was over, assisted by Pierson Caron.

Fort Kent sweeper Ethan Daigle and goalkeeper Drew Deschaine both made some seemingly impossible saves against the Raiders.

“They were both on point, otherwise we would be gone,” Kotes said. 

The Raiders went undefeated 14-0 and registered a whopping 125 goals during the regular season. The Warriors only loss this year was to Caribou in double overtime. 

The game was also the first sideline matchup between Kotes and his mentor, Ashby, who coached Kotes during the four years he played for the University of Maine at Fort Kent Bengals soccer team.

“It’s a bittersweet moment because it is his teaching that brought us here,” Kotes said of Ashby, after the Warriors won the regional game.

“It’s the only game I’ve ever coached in where I couldn’t lose,” Ashby said. “Kalusha Kotes and my community of Fort Kent had a great season.”

The Warriors will play Waynflete for the Class C gold ball on Saturday in Hampden.