TURNER — With two minutes remaining in regulation Tuesday night and steady rain pelting Libby Field, it was hard to imagine Leavitt getting the one goal needed to tie Erskine, never mind two to win.

Two seniors playing in their final annual under-the-lights game as high school soccer players, Amanda Poulin and Liliana Cousineau, shot down that line of thinking with powerful blasts.

Poulin pulled Leavitt even on a direct kick with 1:33 remaining in regulation, and Cousineau collected the game-winner with 4:06 to go in the second overtime of the Hornets’ 2-1 KVAC girls’ victory over the Eagles.

“It would put years on my life if we could start scoring a little bit earlier,” Leavitt coach Chris Cifelli said, “but the fact that we keep scoring so close to the end is a testament to the kids and the will to win.”

Leavitt (3-2-4) has made a living going the distance and walking away with deadlocks this season, but the rally past Erskine (5-3-1) should give the Hornets the Heal Point surplus necessary to make the playoffs with ease.

The Eagles earned a 1-1 tie at South China in the second game of the season, using a penalty kick to tie the Hornets with under two minutes left in regulation.


“We kind of paid them back on this one,” Cifelli said. “When you don’t get a volume of chances, you’ve got to make the most of the chances you get. It’s fitting that two of our seniors scored the goals today.”

Eagles’ sophomore Kaylee Porter put the Hornets in a hole, sneaking behind the defense to cash in Faith Krause’s pass with 17:27 to go.

Leavitt’s relentless pressure led to a pair or direct kicks from 30 yards, both in Poulin’s wheelhouse, in the final three minutes.

Taylor McLaggan headed the first Poulin offering over the goal. An Erskine defender nearly knocked the ensuing corner kick into the cage, but it rattled off the crossbar.

Given her second chance, Poulin had the proper touch.

“I knew when we got those two direct kicks that they were in my range. I just knew that I needed to place them right and get it by the goalie,” Poulin said. “We were definitely putting on the pressure, and we deserved that goal, I thought. We were working really hard.”


The first overtime unfolded without a shot on goal at either end, but it took Cousineau less than a minute to cash in after the teams switched ends.

She flagged down a pass that was slightly off the mark and buried it in the lower left corner of the cage.

“I think it was more meant to be a shot, but it went a little wide,” Cousineau said. “I was just there and shot it. I didn’t think it was going to go in. All of a sudden everyone was yelling and running at me.”

McLaggan, Megan Dunn, Alana York and goalie Cassandra Ray (five saves) were tremendous for Erskine. Angela Daigle made seven stops with huge help from Carlee Long, Miranda Coombs, Zoe Nadeau and Rebecca Fogg on behalf of the Hornets.

“That’s two really good defensive teams. We had a hard time breaking them down and they had a hard time breaking us down,” Erskine coach Ryan Nored said. “All three goals were great. I have the utmost respect for Chris and his team.”

Porter’s goal was only the ninth allowed by Leavitt all season.

“It was in the back of my mind at some point, is it almost worth it to have two ties against Erskine, to have in essence all their Heal Points at least once?” Cifelli said. “But Lili just sighted that one up really well. All season long I’ve gotten on her case a little bit about being too generous and not shooting enough. Maybe that will be the impetus to start shooting a little more, because it was a beautiful shot.”

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