TOPSHAM — The cold and windy conditions were far from ideal, but nothing seemed to bother the Mt. Ararat field hockey team on Wednesday night.

Paige Witwicki and Audrey Marchildon scored second-half goals to lift the No 2 Eagles to a 2-0 victory over No. 7 Mt. Blue in a Class A North quarterfinal game.

The Eagles (10-3-2) will host No. 3 Oxford Hills in a regional semifinal Saturday at a time to be determined. No. 7 Mt. Blue, which made the quarterfinals after topping No. 10 Bangor in the preliminary round earlier this week, finished 8-8.

“We’re a second-half team,” said Witwicki following the game. “We were able to pull ourselves together in the second half and ride our game plan to pull through.”

The Eagles played with some extra motivation Wednesday as it dropped a 3-0 decision to Mt. Blue in the regular season.

“I think they thought they were going to have it,” said Witwicki. “We just worked so hard and have an advantage at home on our turf.”

The Eagles broke through with 1:38 to go in the third quarter when Witwicki fired a shot into the bottom-left corner of the cage. The goal came after a scramble in front of Mt. Blue goalie Brooklynn Keane (five saves). The ball found Witwicki’s stick and she smashed it into the back of the cage.

“I couldn’t have done that without my teammates,” she said. “We were fighting for possession and it just bounced my way.”

Members of the Mt. Ararat field hockey team celebrate after Audrey Marchildon (13) scored a goal in the third quarter to put the Eagles up 2-0 over Mt. Blue during a Class A North quarterfinal game Wednesday at Stadium Field in Topsham. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Marchildon then doubled Mt. Ararat’s lead with just over nine minutes remaining when Witwicki found her on a penalty corner.

Mt. Ararat didn’t allow a penalty corner in the second half after allowing seven in the first.

“We weren’t able to get the ball in the cage, that was our biggest challenge all year,” said Mt. Blue head coach Jody Harmon. “I’m happy with our performance. We played well against a very well-coached and sound team.”

The teams entered halftime locked in a 0-0 game. There were limited scoring opportunities for either side as well.

“We had a young team that progressed a bunch throughout the season,” said Harmon. “That was one of our goals this season, this was a very good year for us.”


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