BANGOR, Maine — Coach Joe Johnson and his defending state Class A champion Bangor High School girls soccer team aren’t dwelling on last Friday night’s 2-1 overtime loss to Brunswick that snapped their 25-game winning streak.
They will try to start another streak Saturday morning when they travel to the University of Maine at Farmington for an 11:30 game against Mt. Blue.
Bangor snapped Brunswick’s 36-game winning streak in the Eastern Maine Class A championship game 2-1 in 2010.
During their streak, the Rams outscored their opponents 144-14.
The players said the streak didn’t put any added pressure on them.
“I wouldn’t say there was pressure. But a lot was expected of us because we had the winning streak,” said senior defensive midfielder Denae Johnson. “We worked our hardest. The outcome just didn’t come out the way we wanted it to.”
“Nobody likes to lose. But it’s just a regular season game and we’re going to move past it. It’s good to have competitive games,” said Bangor coach Johnson.
“We’re putting it behind us. What’s done is done,” said senior attacking midfielder Ally Vanidestine. “We’re just continuing to work hard in practice.
“We learned a lot from the game. Obviously, an outcome can change at any moment no matter how hard you work. The tables can turn really fast and you have to be ready for it,” added Vanidestine.
Bangor led 1-0 against visiting Brunswick and had chances to extend the lead but failed to do so and the Dragons equalized in the second half before winning it in overtime.
“It never feels good to lose,” said senior defensive midfielder Libby Huber.
“We didn’t just want to win the game but we wanted to win all of our games to match what we did last year [going 18-0].
“Now that we have a loss, we’re just going to focus on each individual game,” added Huber, who saw a positive if they wind up meeting Brunswick in the playoffs.
“If we had won, we could have come out with a false sense of confidence against them because we had beaten them once. We’d figure we could beat them again,” explained Huber.
Denae Johnson and Vanidestine said it will provide extra motivation if they face them in the playoffs.
“We’ll be much more driven to beat them,” agreed Vanidestine. “This could work in our favor.”
Coach Johnson and his Rams felt they played a good game against Brunswick.
“Brunswick played awesome. It was the most equally matched game we’ve played all year. It’s nice to have that challenge,” said Huber.
“Both teams played really well. It was a good game,” said senior striker Grace MacLean.
Brunswick leapfrogged past Bangor into the top spot in Eastern Maine Class A and if the 8-0 Dragons win out, they would stand a good chance of hosting all of their playoff games including a possible championship game against Bangor.
Bangor beat Brunswick in the EM title game for the second straight year, 2-0, last fall at Husson University’s Boucher Field in Bangor.
“Soccer is a funny game. You can win on any field on any given day,” said coach Johnson. “Our girls are comfortable playing anywhere. They’ve played all around the state. It would be just another trip down I-95.”
“I wouldn’t say it’s an advantage or a disadvantage,” said MacLean. “The team is a team and we’ll play them whether it’s here or there.”