BUCKFIELD — Spruce Mountain/Dirigo was patient in its boys soccer game against Buckfield on Tuesday.

The Phoenix rallied back from a two-goal deficit and defeated the Bucks 3-2 in double overtime on a goal by Kaleb Finelli.

“We were down two-nil with like 25 minutes left (in the second half),” Finelli, a senior, said. “We talked as a team about intensity; we didn’t give up. We just stuck together and played (the game out).”

The victory snaps a five-game losing streak for Spruce Mountain/Dirigo (2-6).

“It was very huge for us, considering we have been on a several-game losing streak,” Spruce Mountain/Dirigo coach Adam Gettle said. “The boys definitely needed that more, not necessarily (to move up the heal point standings), per se, but for morale.”

Tuesday was the latest in a season of close games for Buckfield (2-5-1). Of its eight games this season, five have been decided by one goal and another ended in a tie.


The Bucks also have been les-than-full strength since the second game of the season, a 3-2 loss to Lisbon on Sept. 9.

“Unfortunately, we have been hit with injuries and sickness and guys on a moose hunt,” Buckfield coach Kyle Rines said. “We hadn’t had a full team since our Lisbon game.”

Led by Justin Lucas, the Bucks took control of the game in the middle of the second half. Lucas broke a scoreless tie with strong in individual effort that led to a shot that went through Spruce Mountain/Dirigo goalie Logan Knight’s legs.

“He has been a very good goal-scorer for us this year. I think that was his ninth goal of the season,” Rines said. “We are missing some of our starters who would normally give him some better passes. He played pretty well today.”

Nearly 90 seconds later, Lucas chipped the ball between two Phoenix defenders, and Buckfield’s Ayden Jefferson chased it down and scored a goal that stretched the lead to 2-0.

Before his game-winner, Finelli played a factor in the Phoenix’s comeback. He ran down the left wing with about 18 minutes remaining in the second half and sent a cross into the 18-yard box to an open Dan Wilson, who fired the shot past Buckfield goalie Gavin Charest (12 saves) to cut the deficit to 2-1.


Spruce’s Lucas Towers finished a well-designed play when he headed a corner kick by teammate Jesse Lewis into the goal to tie the game at 2-2.

“Our goal was to put a head on the ball,” Gettle said of that corner kick. “Lucas capitalized. He was right where he needed to be at the right time.”

Buckfield had the best scoring opportunity in the first overtime in the final seconds, but Phoenix goalie Logan Knight (10 saves) made a diving save of a long-distance shot.

Finelli scored the game-winning goal with under two minutes remaining in the second overtime, after receiving a pass from Wilson.

“When Daniel Wilson got it to me, I got past my defender, and it was me and the goaltender, I was not missing this,” Finelli said. “Left-footed (shot) on the left side, I knew I couldn’t miss.”



Both teams had opportunities to take an early advantage in the first half

Buckfield’s Trevin Albert had a direct kick from 35 yards out that tracked towards the goal, but Knight leaped to grab the ball out of the air.

Spruce Mountain/Dirigo controlled the first half’s final 20 minutes, and its best scoring opportunity came off a corner kick. The ball entered the box and Charest was on the ground. Finelli tried to lift the ball into the net, but Charest made the save.

“I came out of the (game) because I was frustrated; I needed to cool down to get out of my own head,” Finelli said.

Charest made another big save on a direct kick when he jumped in the air to grab the ball as if he was going up for a rebound in basketball.

“Gavin is a really good goalie,” Rines said. “He gets really mad after these one-goal games because he has put us in a really good position to win every one (of those games). I tell him that’s how soccer works: sometimes you get scored on, even though you are playing really well in the net.”

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