MONMOUTH — The Monmouth/Winthrop offense started clicking in the second half of Monday’s girls soccer match against Buckfield.

Four second-half goals elevated the Mustangs to a 4-1 win over the Bucks.

Winthrop/Monmouth coach Gary Trafton said the team put more focus on its defense and its passing after halftime.

“I did tell the girls (at halftime) there were certain areas we needed to watch,” Mustangs coach Gary Trafton said. “We picked it up in the second half at marking (on defense), and we were doing better at passing.”

After a scoreless, rain-plagued first half, the rain began to let up and the two teams scored three in the first 10 minutes of the second.

The Mustangs (4-1) got the first goal thanks to a fortunate bounce when a crossing attempt deflected off a Bucks’ defender for an own goal, which put Monmouth/Winthrop up 1-0.


“We are starting to play together for a change,” Trafton said. “We haven’t played very well as a group, but we are starting to gel now. Hopefully, it carries through from this (game) on.”

Buckfield (4-2) coach Larry Thornton said after the game that he expected the Mustangs to make a push early in the second half.

“What we can take out of (the game) is we need to compete for 80 minutes,” Thornton said. “Even in the weather, we needed to maintain our focus. (Monmouth/Winthrop) came at us in the second half and we lost our focus. I told (the players) at halftime that there was going to be something or a mistake that would happen. Sure enough, it did.”

Buckfield’s Brittany Carrier tied the game at 1-1, putting home a rebound off of Mya Austin’s initial shot.

“We got the momentum again and we scored our goal, 1-1 tie,” Thornton said. “I thought we were going to be OK — it was back-and-forth — we played good in spurts, then we played bad in spurts.”

Elsa Goebel-Bain scored in the 18-yard box to give the Mustangs a 2-1 lead in the ninth minute of the second half.


The Bucks had a chance to tie the game again in the 15th minute, but Austin’s shot grazed the post and went out of bounds.

The Mustangs added to their lead nine minutes later when Abby Atwood scored off a rebound.

“Abby Atwood played really well today — all the girls played well,” Trafton said. “We did the little things that we have been working on for weeks, and we finally put everything together for a change. Buckfield is a good team.”

Freshman Riley Smith chased down a lob inside the 18-yard box and scored, stretching the Mustangs’ lead to 4-1 with under five minutes to play in the game.

“We had people crashing the goalie today, which we haven’t had in a while,” Trafton said.

The first half was played in the heavy rain, but the teams adjusted and created chances in the final 15 minutes.


“I don’t think the conditions bothered us, the bounces (affected both teams),” Trafton said. “We have had practices out in the rain, so I don’t think it bothered us playing in the rain.”

Goebel-Bain had a solid scoring chance for the Mustangs, but it was stopped by Buckfield goalie Kianna Finnigan (10 saves).

The Bucks put pressure in the final two minutes of the opening half come up empty when Mustangs goalie June Foyt (10 saves) stopped two point-blank shots.

“We had some opportunities, we just didn’t finish, and they finished,” Thornton said.

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