Busline League coed soccer

Lynx pounce on Blue Devils, paw to unbeaten championship season

Bernier scores two goals as No. 1 Lincolnville beat No. 2 Bristol at Point Lookout
By Ken Waltz | Oct 22, 2017
Photo by: Ken Waltz

Northport — It is not easy to finish unbeaten league champions, but Lincolnville Central School soccer players continue, year after year, to try their best as the Lynx have experienced that lofty accomplishment twice in recent years — including, again, on Saturday, Oct. 21 on a glorious fall morning at Point Lookout.

The No. 1 Lynx (13-0) again proved how much they enjoy playing on the fast, bouncy artificial turf and larger Point Lookout field, which plays into Lincolnville's ball-movement style, as it employed those characteristics to stay a step or two ahead of No. 2 Bristol Consolidated School with a 3-1 victory in the Busline League middle school coed soccer championship game.

Click for photos from the championship game.

Watch video below.

Click to view other coed soccer photos from this season.

Bristol finished 10-2 this fall, as the Blue Devils only losses came against Lincolnville.

The Lynx, who have vied for league crownns in each of the last eight years, also finished unbeaten Busline League champions in 2011.

Lincolnville, led by veteran coach Ben Edes, includes Jackson Bernier, Lili Clement, Emmit Dayhoof, Jack Fishman, Cole Freeman, Myah Hansen, Matt Kremin, John Pessara, Luna Abaldo, Aiden Aselton, Kara Andrews, Bailey Curtis, Althea Dayhoof, Griffin Dubrow, Lincoln Outerbridge, Lilian Palise, McKinley Boetsch, Mason Clark, Freya Hurlburt, Jaden Johnson, Mateo LaChance, Avery Luft, Kathryn McNeil, Canyon Palise, Jackson Strout, Mikayla Talbot and Dylan Wright.

Bristol includes Colin Bradbury, Abby Holladay, Nicole Hammond, Ashton Foster, Kyle Dunstan, Alexa Rock, Sebastian Chesebro, Spencer Gamage, Eben Lord, Levi Farrin, Avery Redonnett, James Usher Caeli Fletcher, Austin Brown, Owen Dyer, Myles Wotton, Matt Hanna Jacob Masters, Jakob Leavitt and Jacob Craig.

In Saturday's championship, the Lynx led 2-1 at halftime and added a second-half goal. Bernier netted two of the team's three goals.

The first goal came from Bernier, unassisted, and he added a second, on an assist from Johnson, while Dubrow finished the scoring for the Lynx, off an assist from Andrews.

For the Blue Devils, Farrin scored, while Masters assisted.

Kremin played in strong in goal for the Lynx and Bradbury and Redonnett shared net duties for the Blue Devils.

Earlier in the single-elimination playoffs, Lincolnville beat No. 8 Vinalhaven 4-0 and No. 5 Appleton 2-0. Bristol bested No. 7 St. George 4-1 and No. 3 Hope (score unavailable). The top two seeds earned first-round postseason byes.

Edes said the the Lynx have never lost a championship game played at Point Lookout, just a few miles from their school.

He said, having lost their first three efforts to win a championship on natural grass fields, the Lynx now have won three and tied two the last five times they have appeared in the league championship game — always at Point Lookout.

It also was the third straight season Lincolnville brought home a championship plaque.

"And they did it in style, playing their best game of the season," Edes said. "The Lynx passing was spot on all day. They moved the ball well up both sides, and their defense skillfully deflected almost all of Bristol’s multiple efforts at goal, massively assisted by three-time championship starting goalie Matt Kremin, who had an absolutely stellar day in the nets. While Lincolnville had an edge in the play, it was by no means an overwhelming one, and either side could easily have won the day."

The coach said the day actually had a negative start when Lynx team member Emmit Dayhoof, the starting sweeper, could not play due to a Lyme disease diagnosis the previous afternoon.

But the Lynx adjusted by putting Outerbridge at sweeper.

It took the Lynx nearly eight minutes before they tallied their first goal from Bernier. The ball was fed in from the right side, and when the defense failed to clear it, Bernier, in the middle of the box, deftly one-touched the loose ball through a crowd and underneath the diving keeper.

A mere 4:17 later Bernier, again in the middle of the box, received a pass in from Johnson after a free kick from midfielder Fishman. Bernier quickly powered the ball into the net to make it 2-0.

On the other end of the field, Kremin helped make up for Dayhoof’s absence by roaming freely in and out of the box as he played a combination sweeper and keeper and broke up many Bristol pushes forward before they became dangerous.

At 17:55, however, a long clear from Masters caught the Lynx defense by surprise, and Farrin broke through for a solo drive against Kremin. Controlling the ball well and giving Kremin no chance to safely charge him, Farrin closed in and slammed the ball cleanly into the net.

Bristol made adjustments during halftime and came out strongly, playing more of a long-pass offense, but Emmit Dayhoof, feeling more energetic than he had for more than 24 hours and distinctly antsy to play, the coach said, came off the bench to anchor the Lynx defense at sweeper.

Emmit Dayhoof's fine play allowed Kremin to take a more conservative role in the net, the coach said, because Emmit Dayhoof was able to break up the plays that Kremin had handled in the first half.

Lincolnville continued to move the ball with skill and that resulted in an insurance goal at the 41:06-mark of the 60-minute game (two 30-minute halves), which allowed the Lynx fans to breath a bit easier.

It came when Bernier sent Andrews down the left wing. Andrews drove well, turned the ball, beat a defender, and fired an accurate pass into loosely-covered Dubrow in the middle of the box.

Taking advantage of the room, Dubrow sent the ball to the far post for the final score of the game, the coach said.

That did not end the excitement, however, because Bristol charged up the field on three separate occasions in the final eight minutes. The first resulted in a point-blank shot that Kremin managed to block with his hands followed by snagging the bouncing ball, and the second a low cross into the middle that Kremin half-deflected, half-trapped with his right foot and again got with his hands before the Blue Devils could take advantage.

Bristol’s final try with 1:50 left saw Kremin stifle the effort with a sliding tackle at the top of the box that was cleared by the Lynx defense.

Edes said "there are no words sufficient to praise the Lincolnville effort. The front line of Bernier, Dubrow and Johnson, hustled for the ball at every opportunity, moved it well, and played an excellent passing game throughout."

Bernier had 20 goals and six assists this season and, on Saturday, he "roamed the offensive zone freely and used his formidable dribbling and passing skills to great effect," the coach said.

The midfield of Andrews, Fishman and Clark helped the offense and defense, the coach said. Fishman finished with eight goals and 10 assists this season, and "was all over the field using his playmaking skills to consistently start the offense," the coach said.

On defense, Outerbridge "did a superb job filling in for [Emmit] Dayhoof during the first half before returning to his wing defense position, as did Andrews, who filled in for Outerbridge on the outside."

Supporting them on defense was Lili Clement, "who consistently played a tough containment game," and Pessara at stopper, "playing his usual aggressive game and forcing many mistakes on the part of the Bristol players."

Edes said of Emmit Dayhoof’s appearance in the second half: "It is impossible to describe the morale boost it provided for the entire team. His defensive play, as usual, was excellent," the coach said.

In addition, midfielders Aselton and Curtis provided valuable support off the bench, "both showing the same kind of aggressive hustling style as the rest of the team," the coach said.

Edes said he cannot praise enough Kremin’s net abilities. For three years he minded the net with "great skill, racking up an incredibly-stingy, three-year goals-against average of 0.58."

In his three championship games, Kremin was scored on once, this year, a testament to Bristol’s strong play," Edes said.

"All things considered, the game was an example of excellent soccer that both teams have reason to be extremely proud of," the coach said.

Busline League middle school soccer championships
Busline League middle school soccer championships on Oct. 21 at Point Lookout in Northport. (Video by: Ken Waltz and Holly Vanorse Spicer)
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Ken Waltz
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Ken Waltz has been member of the media nearly 35 years and has received hundreds of Maine Press Association and New England Press Association awards for his writing, photography and page design. He studied journalism at the University of Maine in Orono. He lives in South Thomaston with his wife, Sarah. The couple has an adult son, Brandon, who lives in North Carolina.

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