High school boys soccer

Championship dreams: Mustangs, Flyers set for pitched affair

Mount View, Falmouth ready to stand toe to toe – and get it on for state title
By Mark Haskell | Nov 07, 2019
Artwork by: Holly Vanorse Spicer

Falmouth — The Mount View High School boys soccer team made quite the impression on Class C North in its inaugural season in the division, as it ran the table and clinched its first regional title in nearly 40 years.

Now, the Mustangs will look to put themselves on the map in Maine with what could be their first state title in school history as the ‘Stangs will face reigning Class C champion Waynflete of Portland on Saturday, Nov. 9 at 3 p.m. at Falmouth High School.

The following is a synopsis of Saturday afternoon’s state championship clash between the Mustangs and Flyers:

Who: Northern Class C champion Mount View (15-2) versus Southern Class C titlist Waynflete of Portland (15-2).

Where: Falmouth High School.

When: Saturday, Nov. 9 at 3 p.m.

How they got here: In the North, the No. 3 Mustangs defeated No. 6 Central of Corinth 5-2 in the quarterfinals, No. 7 Fort Kent 2-0 in the semifinals and No. 4 George Stevens Academy of Blue Hill 3-1 in the regional championship.

In the South, the No. 3 Flyers defeated No. 6 Lisbon of Libon Falls 8-1 in the quarterfinals, No. 7 Traip Academy Kittery 2-0 in the semifinals and No. 4 Maranacook of Readfield 2-0 in the regional championship.

Interestingly enough, the Mustangs and Flyers were the third seed in their regions and defeated the same three lower-ranked opponents (sixth, seventh and fourth, in succession) to advance to the state Class C championship game.

Projected starters, Mount View: Forwards Brennan Grant and Atlas Hubbard; midfielders Joseph Grassi, Sean Raven, Noah Jacobs, Draedyn Furrow and Elijah Allen; fullbacks Kevin Kinney, Aidan Hubbard and Gunnar Martin; and goalie Ricky Nelson.

Projected starters, Waynflete: Forwards Oliver Burdick and Joey Ansel-Mullen; midfielders Luca Antonelli, Ian McClure-Chute, Roan Hopkins and Patrick Shaw; fullbacks Harry Millspaugh, Ben Adey, Aidan Kieffer and Ilo Holdridge; and goalie Aidan Carlisle.

Outlook: Saturday’s state championship clash features opponents with vastly different backgrounds.

The Mustangs are fresh off their first regional championship win since 1980, where they lost to eventual state Class B champion Maine Central Institute of Pittsfield.

The Flyers, whether toiling in Class C or Class D, are annual regional and state championship contenders.

“Waynflete is a truly gifted team,” said Mount View coach Jeremy Von Oesen. “They are skilled at every position and do a great job of spreading the field and pass around their opponents. They create high-quality chances and finish while passing enough to limit their opponents chances. They will be the best team we have played this season and we look forward to the challenge.”

The Flyers not only were last year’s state crown, but were state Class C runners-up in 2008 and 2015. In Class D, the Flyers also collected state titles in 2002, 2001 and 1993 and were state runners-up in 2004, 2003, 1992 and 1990.

In addition, Waynflete has not lost a Class C game since the 2017 season, a semifinal playoff loss at Maranacook.

“Waynflete’s experience will benefit them, but I believe our hunger will help us,” he said. “We enjoyed the night after the GSA win, but got right back at it with film and strategy planning because we have talked all year about our mission to end the postseason with a win. And we have one more to go.”

In the regular season, Mount View outscored opponents 70-10 and 10-3 in the regional playoffs, while the Flyers outscored opponents 51-11 in the regular season and 21-1 in the regional playoffs.

Von Oesen is in his first season guiding the Mustangs, but has coached the Unity College men’s and women’s programs for years (though he vacated the women’s position this season in part to make time to guide the Mount View boys team).

Mount View, competing in Class C for the first time, took many foes by surprise in the Class C North playoffs, as the Mustangs playing predominantly a Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B schedule.

The Flyers, by comparison, play teams in Classes B-D and have, to their credit, wins over Class B York — which defeated No. 2 Medomak Valley in the Class B South quarterfinal – and Class B Cape Elizabeth. Waynflete also defeated highly-touted North Yarmouth Academy, which will vie for the Class D state crown Saturday against Central Aroostook of Mars Hill.

"I know Mount View has had an outstanding year and has some impressive wins on their record and some very talented players," said Waynflete coach Brandon Salway. "We'll need to play our best game of the year to beat them."

This season, Waynflete has been led offensively by Ansel-Mullen (12 goals, 12 assists), Burdick (12 goals, 5 assists), McClure-Shute (7 goals, 3 assists) and Antolini (7 goals, 9 assists).

For Mount View, Allen (29 goals, 12 assists), Draedyn Furrow (13 goals, 13 assists), Atlas Hubbard (11 goals, 2 assists), Noah Jacobs (9 goals, 8 assists), Tyler Russell (6 goals), Sean Raven (2 goals, assist), Kevin Kinney (goal, assist), Joe Grassi (2 goals), Brennan Grant (3 goals, 2 assists), Declan Knowlton (2 goals, assist), Ruben Schofield (goal) and Ricky Nelson (2 assists).

The Mustangs unofficially began the season by going undefeated in a seven-on-seven summer tournament and continued into the preseason playing many Class A teams, including a win over Edward Little of Auburn.

"This gave us confidence early,” Von Oesen said. "Also we talked often about working hard to make sure we get better and not have an early exit from the postseason. They were strong last year, but as they saw, by year’s end, anything can and does happen so we need to control the results.”

The year for the Mustangs also included signature wins against Maranacook — which lost to Waynflete in the Class C South regional final — and rallying to earn a midseason win over John Bapst of Bangor.

Against the Crusaders, the ‘Stangs learned how to prevail in a come-from-behind style victory, while their win against the Black Bears “showed us that if we do what we do [and] stay the course, we can overcome challenges and succeed."

Von Oesen asked Maranacook coach Don Beckwith, who has won multiple state soccer championships, for a scouting report on the Flyers, and Beckwith told Von Oesen they “are really good down the center and they have very good size and are very good in the air.”

Salway added that "we move the ball well and can play possession-style, but are also pretty athletic."

The one question mark to the starting lineup Saturday for Mount View is Grant, who tweaked his knee after scoring the first goal of the regional championship against the Eagles. If he cannot start, freshman Tyler Russell will get the nod at forward for the Mustangs.

Von Oesen added that fan support will play a role in Saturday’s game. Mount View has a loud, passionate fan base — that packed the stands with umbrellas aplenty at Hampden Academy for Tuesday’s rain-soaked, regional championship win — and expects another big turnout for the ‘Stangs against the Flyers.

“Our fans travel so well and were amazing versus GSA,” Von Oesen said. “And will be even stronger against Waynflete Saturday. We have a student bus going too. Community members sent words of encouragement last game and I read them on the bus. The boys got fired up and that support [we have] is amazing.”

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