The high school field hockey season kicked off throughout the state Thursday, with a pair of Waldo County squads — Belfast and Mount View of Thorndike — both of whom look to be legitimate Eastern Class B title contenders, taking the field in a pair of highly-anticipated games.

Both kicked off the season on the road, with the Lions drawing the short end of the stick, traveling to Newport to take on the defending state Class B champion Nokomis Warriors, while the Mustangs traveled to Farmington to face Mount Blue, which has dropped to Class B this season after spending years in the Class A ranks.

The Lions and Warriors settled for a 1-1 tie, while the Mustangs blanked the Cougars 4-0.

Mount View 4, Mount Blue 0 … At Farmington, the Mustangs showed the Cougars why they were one of the top teams in Class B last season by notching a shutout victory over the hosts.

Delainey Kein scored two first-half goals for the ‘Stangs, while Janelle Thornley and Brittany Masessa also banged the back of the cage for the visitors. Masessa, Mercedes Reynolds and Andrea Smith added assists in the victory, with Smith’s coming on an insert from a second-half penalty corner.

Abbie Charrier made three saves on four shots in the cage for Mount View, while Cassie Gadbury had 14 saves on 18 shots for Mount Blue.

Belfast 1, Nokomis 1 (2 OT) … At Newport, the Lions certainly had the cards stacked against them in facing the defending stae Class B champion Warriors on the host’s home turf to kick off the regular season.

However, the Lions, who look based on their preseason play as a favorite to contend for conference and regional crowns, were not intimidated, taking a 1-0 lead deep into the second half before the Warriors scored the equalizer with time winding down. Two overtime periods later, the Lions and Warriors settled for a 1-1 tie.

Lexi Nelligan scored the lone goal for Belfast, on an assist from Maddy Cummings, while Leah Edmondson scored for Nokomis, on a pass from Marissa Shaw.

The Warriors outshot the Lions 23-8. Julia Ward turned away 18 shots in the cage for Belfast, while Kendra Underhill made four saves for Nokomis.

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