Behind Brooks' hat trick, Mariners sail past Tigers in prelim playoffNo. 4 Oceanside to host No. 5 Caribou in quarterfinals Oct. 29
Thomaston — If the rest of the high school girls soccer teams in Eastern Class B have not heard the name Makenna Brooks, they likely are familiar with it now.
That is because No. 4 Oceanside hosted No. 13 Gardiner in a regional prelim playoff on Friday afternoon, Oct. 25 at Sam Pendleton Field and to say the talented sophomore midfielder had an impact on the postseason game would be, well, a gross understatement.
After both teams were scoreless through the first half, Makenna Brooks netted three goals in the second half and assisted on another as the Mariners sailed into the quarterfinals with a 4-0 win over the Tigers.
Oceanside also avenged one of its three losses on the campaign as the locals dropped a 1-0 decision to Gardiner Sept. 16 in Gardiner. The Tigers' season ended at 10-3-2.
Oceanside (11-3-1) next will host No. 5 Caribou (11-4), a 1-0 prelim playoff winner over No. 12 Presque Isle (5-8-2), on Tuesday, Oct. 29 at 2:30 p.m. in the quarterfinals.
The Mariners do not play the Vikings or Wildcats during the regular season.
While Makenna Brooks had three goals and one assist in the win, Emily Gould also creased the net and Jillian Brooks, Caitlin Raye and Paige Tyler logged assists for the Mariners. Makenna Brooks finished with 10 shots on goal and Gould four.
Oceanside, coming off a huge season-ending 1-0 win over unbeaten, No. 1 Waterville, dominated both possession and shots through Friday's game, despite the fact the game was scoreless through the first 40 minutes.
The Mariners led 20-2 in shots and 10-4 in corner kicks. The hosts also edged the Tigers 10-9 in direct kicks.
Kalyn Grover made two saves in goal for Oceanside, while the duo of Ally Day and Lauren Chadwick combined to make 15 saves in net for Gardiner.
Veteran Mariner coach Darryl Townsend's message to his student-athletes at halftime was simple.
“I just told them they needed to be more deliberate and not to panic,” he said. “They were pressing and trying to hurry and making some bad decisions and not making the intelligent pass. And our corner kicks were good, we were just missing them. I just told them yesterday in practice we've got to do a better job cleaning those up.”
The Mariners wasted little time doing just that in the second half when Makenna Brooks booted a corner kick into the box to Gould, a ball that was hit by Day out of bounds, to set up a second corner chance.
This time Gould made good on her teammate's serve into the box as she played it off her body and into the net with 37:55 remaining.
Minutes later, Tyler passed the ball to Jillian Brooks, who chipped a shot toward the goal from just inside the 18-yard line.
Day made a top-tier save to prevent a top-shelf goal, but Jillian Brooks' cousin Makenna Brooks was there for the rebound as the ball bounded back into play and onto Makenna Brooks' foot and she deposited into the Tiger net with 35:03 left.
At that point, goalie Day came out of the game in favor of Chadwick so Day, one of Gardiner's top players, could become a field player and attempt to jump start the Tigers offensively.
However, the Mariners marked Day well and Makenna Brooks added two more scores from long distance, the first coming with 25:50 left, on a shot from about 25 yards out and the final score of the game from outside the 18-yard line off her back foot with 8:35 remaining.
“That's where I'm most comfortable,” said Makenna Brooks. “That's what I like to do. I kind of stay out and if I have the opportunity I take it.”
“Two of those goals were absolutely awesome,” said Townsend of Makenna Brooks' final two scores. “Makenna's one of those players where once the ice is kind of broken and she feels the pressure might be off she really cranks it up and does a fantastic job. Her ball striking is good, her ballhandling, her vision [is great]. Just a super, super effort.”
Makenna Brooks said that after winning its final three regular-season games, including that 1-0 victory over Waterville, Oceanside's confidence is running high.
“Once we get going it's hard to stop us,” she said.
It now is evident that can be said of the Mariners and Makenna Brooks.
Associate Sports Director
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Mark has been covering local sports throughout Knox, Waldo and part of Lincoln county since 2007. He has a bachelor's degree in Mass Communication from the University of Maine and is also a 2000 graduate of Rockland District High School.
Mark is an avid fan of the Boston Red Sox, fantasy sports, the AMC drama "Breaking Bad" and iced coffee.
He resides in Thomaston with his wife Jenn and sons Beckett and Austin.
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