OLD TOWN — When two high school field hockey teams the caliber of Belfast and Old Town face off, the game is certain to go down to the wire.

Having split its first two meetings during the regular season, the squads squared off with a berth in the Class B North championship game in the balance on Saturday, Oct. 30.

In the end, it was a second-quarter goal by Kilee Bradeen that proved the difference as the Coyotes defended their home field in a hard-fought, 1-0 win over the Lions.

With the victory, No. 2 Old Town (13-4) advances to the regional final, where it beat previously undefeated, top-ranked Lawrence of Fairfield 1-0, and then lost in the state final to Leavitt of Turner 1-0.

For the No. 3 Lions, who also defeated No. 6 Winslow 5-0 in the quarterfinal on Thursday, Oct. 28, their season closed at 13-3.

The Coyotes won two of three games against the Lions, though the foes could not have been more evenly-matched. In 180 minutes of hockey this fall, the opponents finished 5-5 in goals.

On Saturday’s semifinal playoff clash, the Coyotes held an 8-7 edge in shots and 9-4 advantage in penalty corners.

Chelsey Cote made two saves in the cage for Old Town and Madison Shorey seven saves in goal for Belfast.

Lions prowl past Raiders

Belfast, ultimately, did the same thing it had done this fall on Thursday, Oct. 28 against No. 6 Winslow in a quarterfinal playoff.

Namely, overwhelm an opponent with tenacious defense and lean on reliable scoring options. Of which the talented Lions have a bevy.

Belfast’s Reagan Seekins, front. Photo by Mark Haskell

Belfast controlled play throughout the afternoon game and caged three goals in the final 6:30 to pull away with a hard-fought, 5-0 win over the Black Raiders.

“They all played with heart and teamwork,” said Lion coach Jan Holmes-Jackson of her student-athletes. “They were very determined to win today.”

Belfast’s Lauren Hall, front, and Mia Winslow. Photo by Mark Haskell

In Thursday’s quarterfinal, Belfast led 1-0 after the first quarter and 2-0 at halftime and after three quarters.

Audra Faulkingham and Breanna Shorey caged two goals to lead the Lion offense, while Grace Hall added one goal and one assist. Brenna Shorey and Natalie Curry added one assist in the win.

Belfast held a 39-7 advantage in shots and 12-4 edge in penalty corners.

Madison Shorey made six saves in the cage for the Lions and Lainey Bell 28 saves in goal for the Black Raiders.

The Lions ended the first and second quarters in style as Faulkingham scored, on an assist by Hall, with 59 seconds to play in the first, while Brenna Shorey added an unassisted score with 1:05 to go before halftime.

In the fourth, Belfast got goals from Hall, Faulkingham and Brenna Shorey with 6:27, 4:20 and 1:29 remaining.