Poland’s Emma Williams (9) is caught between Leavitt’s Kayleigh Gilbert (21) and Emma Chiasson (3) as they all vie for the ball in a soccer game in Turner on Friday. Tony Blasi/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

TURNER — Striker Leah Maheux was beaming with a wide smile that could cover the entire soccer field where she just scored five goals for Leavitt.

Leavitt senior Leah Maheux (4) shares a laugh with teammate Jaylee Boucher as Maheux heads up field during soccer game in Turner on Friday. Maheux scored five goals for the Hornets. Tony Blasi/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

The last time Maheux scored that many in a game was way back when she played rec soccer as a kid. Her scoring exploits helped steer the Hornets to a 7-1 victory over Poland on Friday.

Maheux turned in a hat trick in the first half and booted in back-to-back goals in the second. But she was quick to point out that her stunning, five-goal performance was due to a collaborative effort from her teammates.

“It is really cool because I have never done that before,” Maheux said with that same wide smiled still etched on her face. “It is just feels like a great feeling to have my team support me. … But this was a great game for us to have because it brought up our spirits a lot and we are just going to go out and fight for the next game.

“This wasn’t just me. It started from the back (of the team) and it worked all its way up. Every one worked really hard today. I am very proud of everyone.”

Maheux, who scored three goals against Gardiner on Wednesday, admitted that she was surprised Leavitt (2-1) was able to come away with such a lopsided victory against the Knights (1-3). 

“We didn’t expect it to be like this,” Maheux said. “We came and we just fought. I am very proud of us and it turned out to be a great game. I just want to say thank you to everyone who helped me, and my team has done a great job for letting me have these opportunities.”

The first half was the opening act of the Maheux Show, which featured a strong supporting cast. Maheux punched in two of her three goals in the first 10 minutes of the game, with the assists going to Eme Bowie and Alison Noniewicz. 

Maheux completed her first-half hat trick with 17:36 remaining in the first half, scoring on a Jalee Boucher assist. 

Bowie got in on the scoring with an unassisted goal with 8:22 left in the half. Then, with 25 seconds remaining, senior midfielder Lotus Laverdiere dropped in a goal on a Katie Blouin assist, providing the Hornets a 5-0 lead going into halftime.

Even Leavitt coach Chris Cifelli was taken aback by the Hornets offensive attack against Poland.

“The kids have really come together playing as a unit,” Cifelli said. “I have seen some of Poland’s scores and they have been very, very competitive. I think it was a big rush, maybe, of the goals that kind of got them on their heels because they did settle down the second half.”

Cifelli was proud of how the Hornets all were involved in the victory. 

“Leah finished so many of the goals for us, but a lot of people did things to get the ball to her,” Cifelli said. “And we did a great job defensively in the first half to kind of frustrate them, which was great, too.”

Poland’s Gabrielle Bolduc (10) works the ball as Leavitt’s Riley Chiasson (16) closes in during a soccer game in Turner on Friday. Tony Blasi/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Cifelli, a longtime coach who returned to the Hornets this season after a few years away, said he would have delve into the past to see if any of his players pulled off a five-goal performance like Maheux.

“(Maheux) does so many things, and what is so wonderful about her is that she is a great finisher,” he said. “She does have a knack for scoring, and that comes from practice. She puts in tireless hours. But the other part, too, is she does make some of the other players better, and that is what just makes her a complete player.

“She is just such a wonderful teammate and a great kid to coach.”

Maheux topped off the Hornets’ scoring in the second half with an unassisted goal and one that was set up by a Noniewicz assist.

Poland’s Halie Vachon spoiled the would-be shutout when she scored on a penalty kick with 17:52 left in the second half after Leavitt was called for a handball penalty.

“They didn’t have school today, so I don’t know if that was a factor (in the game), where they had a hard time getting into a routine once they got off the bus,” Poland coach Katrina Seeley said. “We were quiet. We didn’t communicate a lot, so I think that’s what we lacked — a lot of communication.

“I think (Leavitt) played well. I think when we play them again in a couple of weeks, (the Hornets) will see a different team because we are a lot better than what the scoreboard says.”


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