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The "French" Canadiens battled the "English" Wanderers (and later the Maroons).
The large crowds and wild enthusiasm are typical for Portland-Deering games – a rivalry dating back 45 years to the advent of both soccer programs.
Portland Coach Rocco Frenzilli, who helped start the school’s soccer program in 1972, said last year’s playoff game was one of the most intense he has ever seen. “It’s really interesting coaching on the peninsula with Deering High.” Frenzilli said the deep personal connections between Portland and Deering athletes fuel the rivalry.
Deering Coach Joel Costigan doesn’t hesitate when asked about his boys’ soccer team’s painful defeat to Portland in a Class A South quarterfinal last fall.
“They got the call right – I looked at the video,” Costigan said of an offside violation that negated a Deering goal in a scoreless game with less than four minutes remaining. Alex Frank’s goal with 40 seconds left lifted the sixth-seeded Bulldogs to a 1-0 upset of No. Bulldogs fans who helped pack the stands at Deering’s Memorial Stadium flooded onto the field in celebration while the Rams headed to the locker room, many of them in tears.
It was not until 1926 that the NHL took sole ownership of the Stanley Cup. for a short time created a cross-town rivalry in New York City between the New York Rangers and New York Americans.
By that time, the league began expanding into the United States, and new rivalries were created. The economic turmoil of the Great Depression and World War II, however, forced several teams to fold, with the result that by 1942 the NHL consisted of only 6 teams.“You have the ball, and you look up and see some kid you’ve played with for five years.And you’re like, ‘Wow, OK, you’re not on my team anymore.’ So you have to kind of adjust.” Frenzilli said he sees generations of Portland and Deering graduates remain loyal fans until they have children who decide to attend the opposite school.After the high school season, Daligan trains with Costigan – the goalkeeping coach for the Westbrook-based Roosevelt Soccer Club.“It’s weird, because I’m playing against my friends.” “It’s like a backyard soccer game,” said Portland senior back Quinn Clarke.“We watched that goal go in, and we all go, ‘Oh no,'” Frenzilli said of the disallowed goal. The high schools are 2.4 miles apart, and many Portland and Deering players live in the same neighborhoods or play on the same club teams, creating a complicated dynamic when they face each other.