LEWISTON – The way Lewiston High School handled the first half of a monstrous start to its boys’ soccer schedule, the Blue Devils expected an even more enjoyable encore.

Instead, the happy ending turned into a horror story in the home opener Tuesday night. Brunswick rode P.J. Burnette’s natural hat trick to a spacious halftime lead, and ultimately a 5-0 Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference victory at Don Roux Field.

Only four days earlier, Lewiston boarded a bus and battled another perennial mid-coast power, Mt. Ararat, to a nil-nil stalemate. The Devils had a potential game-winning goal waved off with two seconds remaining in overtime.

“It was great,” said senior captain Jon Paradis, “but I don’t think we came out with the same intensity as that game, and unfortunately it showed.”

Brunswick (2-0) showed no ill effects from playing the first half against the wind, registering more goals (four) than Lewiston shots (three).

Burnette tickled the net in the seventh, 27th and 30th minutes. Sam Kaplan’s centering passes set up the first two tallies. Hansen Mason’s cross from the far right corner put Burnette in position for a header and his third strike.

“He actually wants to (play soccer) the rest of his life, I think,” Brunswick coach Peter Gardner said of Burnette. “He scored the goals last season, and he’s going to have to score the goals this season. He’s going to be a marked person.”

Mason made it 4-0 when he filled the empty cage with nine minutes remaining in the half.

Lewiston goalkeeper Alex Wong (eight saves) charged the Dragons’ initial chip from 25 yards out, but his collision with a defender left Mason unchallenged on the follow-up.

“I think we weren’t ready to play. I think that having played a good game against Mt. Ararat last Friday, we should have been feeling very comfortable. We might have been a bit too comfortable,” said Lewiston coach Mike McGraw. “We might have been intimidated. Certainly it was embarrassing. It was not an easy thing to watch.”

The wind died down when the sun disappeared early in the second half, and Lewiston mustered only four more peripheral shots against Brunswick keeper Pete Morrell.

Kyle Sullivan completed the scoring with 23:49 to play, turning and firing from 15 yards.

Lewiston (0-1-1) begins a stretch of five of its next six games on the road Saturday at Oxford Hills.

“It was a learning experience,” said Paradis, one of eight Lewiston seniors. “I think every game we come out to win and try to play our hardest, but today was just an off day.”


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