WALES — Twice during the regular season, the Maranacook/Winthrop/Spruce Mountain boys lacrosse team saw late leads turn into tough losses.

“We had to learn something from them,” coach Kyle Dennett said.

On a sun-splashed Saturday morning, in front of a charged crowd at Oak Hill High School, the Hawks showed they most certainly did.

Maranacook/Winthrop/Spruce Mountain’s Skyler Boucher tries to get around Oak Hill’s Nate Marcotte during the Class C quarterfinal game Saturday in Wales. Sun Journal photo by Lee Horton

Skyler Boucher scored four goals and assisted on three others, and Ian Dow buried a back-breaker late in the final quarter to help give the No. 8 Hawks a stunning 13-12 upset of top seed and previously unbeaten Oak Hill/Monmouth/Lisbon in a Class C quarterfinal game.

“To come in here and make a statement, that was fun,” said Boucher. “It was exhilarating. That’s a great team we battled.”

Maranacook/Winthrop/Spruce Mountain (10-4) will play at No. 4 Gray-New Gloucester (11-2) in a semifinal game Wednesday. Oak Hill/Monmouth/Lisbon finished 12-1.

Collin Adair scored three goals and Garit Laliberte added a pair for the Hawks. Patrick Prescott and Tim Worster also scored for the victors while goalie Will Hays had 11 saves, including some dandies in the final five minutes.

Nate Marcotte scored five goals and Xavier Michaud added three for Oak Hill, which had opportunities to score the equalizer late in regulation.

“We’ve prepared for a game like this since Day 1,” Dennett said. “We knew we’d get a game like this. We wanted this. We want to win a state championship.”

The Hawks took a big step toward that goal Saturday, but it didn’t come easy.

They fell behind 2-0 early then saw a 12-7 lead shrivel after the Raiders scored three goals in the opening four minutes of the final quarter to make it a 12-10 game.

“It was tight,” Dennett said.

“We battled back,” Oak Hill coach Joe Hinkley added. “We were down five goals but we never gave up.”

With a palpable tension gripping the game, the Hawks scored the eventual game-winner with 4:30 left in regulation, when Dow took a pass from Adair to the right of Oak Hill goalie Brandon Glover and rifled a shot inside the near post.

“We needed a goal,” Dow said. “We had lost leads late in games to Mt. Ararat and Biddeford and we couldn’t do that (Saturday). I had pretty much a scoreless game at that point. We went on a fastbreak and I took the pass and tucked it away.”

Trailing 13-10, the Raiders pulled within a goal when Marcotte and Michaud scored within 30 seconds of each other with 3:20 left in regulation.

Despite heavy pressure in the final minutes, the Raiders couldn’t push one past Hays.

“It was nice to make a couple saves in the end,” Hays said.

Maranacook/Winthrop/Spruce Mountain’s Thomas Thornton fires a shot during the Class C quarterfinal against Oak Hill in Wales on Saturday. Sun Journal photo by Lee Horton

The Hawks scored six unanswered goals in the opening period to take a 6-2 lead before the Raiders rallied to pull within 8-6 at the half.

Boucher scored two goals in the opening three and a half minutes to give the Hawks 10-6 lead.

Maranacook/Winthrop/Spruce Mountain went into the break carrying a 12-7 lead, but again the Raiders stormed back to make things interesting late.

“It was a really crazy win for us,” Dow said. “It feels great.”