BATH, Maine — The Scarborough boys soccer team hasn’t needed to come from behind many times in recent years, but when faced with that challenge Saturday the Red Storm persevered.
Sam Ware’s goal 6:52 into overtime lifted Scarborough to a 2-1 victory over Hampden Academy and its fourth Class A state championship in the last six years.
The title also was the second straight for 17-1 Scarborough while Hampden, seeking its first state crown, finished 16-2.
The play leading to the golden goal was typical of many Scarborough scoring chances, with a long through-ball by Chris Cowie changing the field.
Matt Caron received Cowie’s kick about 25 yards out and slid a short pass to Ware, who directed his title-winning shot into the upper left corner of the net.
“I saw (Caron) go a little bit outside so I cut in between the two defenders and he played me a beautiful ball and I just tried to get it on frame,” said Ware.
Scarborough outshot Hampden 25-14. Patrick Stanton made 10 saves for the Red Storm while Hampden’s Isaiah Bess made 16 stops.
Hampden took a 1-0 lead when Noah Parker scored on the first shot of the second half.
Parker gained control at midfield and passed ahead to teammate Paxton Oversmith. Oversmith quickly returned the ball to Parker, who struck a 30-yard rocket over Stanton’s head and under the crossbar with 38:02 left.
“After we scored I thought in the next five minutes we actually might able to get another one, hoping they might be down a little bit, but they came back real quick,” said Hampden coach Josh Stevens. “They weren’t going to let us score again that quickly.”
Scarborough pressed the attack during the final 20 minutes, leading to Charlie Mader’s tying goal with 7:19 left. Mike Caryl’s long, high ball from midfield created a race for possession near the 18-yard line, with Mader winning the race and popping the ball over Bess and into the open net.
“It took one bounce and I saw the goalie coming out,” said Mader, “so I just tried to get a piece of it and chip it over him.
“Their defense was really strong at times and we were having trouble getting through on the ground so we tried going over the top and that’s how we got the goal.”
Scarborough had the better first-half scoring chances only to be denied by Bess, his fellow defenders and one post.
Wyatt Omsberg sent Mader in alone on Bess midway through the period, but Mader’s shot caught the inside of the right goalpost and bounced out.
A subsequent bid by Ware amid a scramble in the crease was blocked away by Hampden’s Cam Scott, while teammate Nick Gilpin later cleared an Omsberg header ticketed for the back of the net.
Bess was tested again in the final minutes of the half when Mader received a short throw-in on the left wing about 20 yards from the end line with his back to the goal, spun and quickly struck a rising shot that a leaping Bess deflected over the crossbar.
“We wanted to try to take pressure off our defense by keeping the ball in their end as best as we could, and in the midfield we didn’t want to get beat with one pass,” said Hampden coach Josh Stevens. “We were able to do most of that this game, unfortunately things don’t always go your way and today was a good example of that.”