Cape Elizabeth junior Louis Daukas reacts after a first half sack during the Capers’ 23-7 home win over Fryeburg Academy Friday night.
Mike Strout photos.
More photos below.
FA- 0 7 0 0- 7
CE- 7 7 7 2- 23
CE- Weare 5 run (Morin kick)
CE- Glanville 73 pass from Hartel (Morin kick)
FA- Chisari 38 run (Thurston kick)
CE- Weare 2 run (Morin kick)
CE- Safety, Saunders forced out of end zone
CAPE ELIZABETH—Last week, Cape Elizabeth’s football team enjoyed a 14-7 halftime lead at Leavitt, but the Capers let it get away.
Friday evening at Hannaford Field, Cape Elizabeth was up by the same score at the break against resurgent Fryeburg Academy, but this time, the Capers used the lessons they learned in Turner and applied them and as a result, earned a big victory at a critical juncture of the season.
Cape Elizabeth got off to a quick start when, after junior quarterback Andrew Hartel hit junior Ethan Convey for 42 yards, senior workhorse running back Ryan Weare scored on a 5-yard run for a 7-0 lead just over three minutes into the contest.
Early in the second period, the Capers doubled their advantage, when Hartel threw a short pass to senior Jack Glanville and Glanville did the rest, breaking tackles and racing 73 yards to paydirt.
The Raiders pulled within 14-7 at the break behind a 38-yard scoring run from senior Jared Chisari, but the hosts would control the second half behind a staunch defense and Weare’s ability to milk the clock and move the chains.
Late in the third period, Weare scored his second TD, a 2-yard dive, to give Cape Elizabeth some breathing room.
The Capers’ defense then made their presence felt with a scoring play in the fourth quarter, as they forced a safety and that was more than enough to lead the way to a 23-7 victory.
Cape Elizabeth improved to 5-2, stayed undefeated all-time against Fryeburg Academy and dropped the Raiders to 5-2 in the process.
“Defensively, we played incredible and rose to the challenge,” said Capers coach Aaron Filieo. “We stepped up offensively and did enough. It was a good win.”
With fall definitely in the air, the high school football regular season is rapidly winding down and Friday’s penultimate contest had big implications for both squads.
Fryeburg Academy is enjoying its best season in years. The Raiders started with wins over Lake Region (40-6), York (20-0) and Poland (48-6). After a narrow 17-14 home loss to Leavitt, victories over Gardiner (32-6) and Gorham (40-8) followed.
Cape Elizabeth blanked visiting Yarmouth in the opener (48-0), then held on for a win at Gardiner (21-13). After falling at Wells in a regional final rematch (14-7), the Capers handled visiting Maine Central Institute (35-15) and Gray-New Gloucester (61-6). Last week, despite having opportunities late to win it, Cape Elizabeth lost at Leavitt (19-14).
Last year, in the opener, Cape Elizabeth went to Fryeburg and prevailed, 29-6.
Friday, on a crisp, cool (55-degree) evening, the Capers beat the Raiders for the 11th time in 11 all-time meetings.
Cape Elizabeth won the coin toss, but deferred possession to the second half and its defense made an immediate impact.
Fryeburg Academy started at its 30 and after junior quarterback Oscar Saunders hit senior Cobey Johnson for 16 yards, he lost two yards on a scramble and his next pass was intercepted by Capers sophomore Alex Morin, who returned the ball to Cape Elizabeth’s 42 yards line.
Six plays later, the hosts had the lead for good.
Hartel threw incomplete on first down, but after Weare gained three yards, Hartel bought himself some time until Convey found himself wide open behind the defense. Hartel’s long throw was completed for 43 yards and would have gone for a score, but Convey fell down at the Raiders’ 12.
That only delayed the inevitable, as after Weare ran for four yards and Glanville picked up three, Weare got the call on third-and-3 and scored on a 5-yard run, stretching the ball across the goal line with 8:44 to play in the opening quarter. Morin added the extra point for a 7-0 lead.
Fryeburg Academy gained a first down on its next possession, as senior Cody Gullikson ran for five yards, then picked up six more. But after Saunders kept the ball for four yards and Chisari ran for five, Chisari was thrown for a two-yard loss, forcing a punt.
The Capers got the ball back at their 8, but in a disturbing sign of things to come, had their drive short-circuited by a penalty. After Weare gained six yards on first down, a 13-yard burst by Glanville was negated by a holding penalty. Weare then gained a yard before being thrown for a three-yard loss, forcing a punt.
The Raiders then started at Cape Elizabeth’s 42, but after Chisari ran three times for a dozen yards and a first down at the 30, a false start penalty backed them up five yards and after Gullikson ran for seven yards, Capers junior Louis Daukas sacked Saunders on consecutive plays, backing Fryeburg Academy up to the 42 as the first quarter gave way to the second.
Senior Caleb Eklund’s punt was then mishandled by Convey and bounced into the end zone, but was ruled a touchback instead of a safety, as Convey never had control of the ball.
Cape Elizabeth then quickly struck for its second touchdown.
After Glanville ran for eight yards and Weare gained one, a Glanville first down was negated by a holding penalty, but on third-and-12 from the 27, Hartel threw a quick pass near the left sideline to Glanville, who broke a tackle, picked up a first down, cut back, broke another tackle, then raced all the way to the end zone for a 73-yard score with 9:09 to play in the first half, capping a three-play, 80-yard drive in 2 minutes, 7 seconds. Morin added the PAT for a 14-0 advantage.
The Capers’ defense then got the ball right back, forcing a three-and-out, as the Raiders could only muster two rushes for six yards by Chisari before Gullikson was held to no gain.
Cape Elizabeth then went three-and-out as well, as two Glanville runs gained three yards and Weare’s five-yard scamper set up fourth-and-2, necessitating a punt.
With 4:49 remaining before halftime, Fryeburg Academy started at its 38 and marched in four plays and 1:51 for a touchdown.
After Chisari ran for seven yards, he gained two and a personal foul 15-yard penalty on the hosts was tacked on, giving the Raiders a first down at the Capers’ 38. After Chisari was held to no gain, he got the ball again, ran to the left, turned the corner and beat the pursuit to the pylon for a 38-yard score with 2:58 to play in the half. Freshman Eddie Thurston tacked on the extra point to make the score 14-7.
Cape Elizabeth tried to answer, as Weare ran for eight yards and Hartel hit sophomore Matt Laughlin for 21 yards and after Weare gained six yards, Hartel found Convey for 13 more to the Fryeburg Academy 29, but after an incomplete pass, Hartel was intercepted in the end zone by Saunders.
The Raiders got one final chance from their 20 with 40.6 seconds remaining in the half, but after the Capers jumped offsides and Chisari ran twice for six yards, a false start penalty backed them up five yards. Saunders then hit Johnson for 15 yards and on a deflected pass, connected with Johnson for 10 more, but on the final play of the half, Saunders threw incomplete.
In the first 24 minutes, Cape Elizabeth enjoyed a 192-131 edge in yardage. Hartel completed 4-of-7 passes for 150 yards and a score. The Capers were penalized four times for 28 yards and had one turnover.
Cape Elizabeth would eventually gain some breathing room in the second half, but it took awhile.
The Capers got the ball to start the third period and began at midfield. After a 12-yard pass from Hartel to Convey, Weare ran twice for three yards before Hartel hit Convey for 36 yards on a slant for a first down at the Fryeburg Academy 26. Cape Elizabeth couldn’t finish, however, as after Weare ran for two yards and Glanville picked up five, Saunders broke up a pass to Convey in the end zone and another Hartel incompletion gave the Raiders the ball on downs at their 24.
Fryeburg Academy would go three-and-out, as Chisari ran for a yard, Saunders picked up four, then threw incomplete.
After a 19-yard punt return from junior Zach Stewart, Cape Elizabeth got the ball back at the Raiders’ 46. Weare then ran for six yards and 14 more for a first down at the 26. Runs of four-, five- and two-yards by Weare moved the chains to the 15. After Weare ran for one more yard, Hartel hit Glanville for 12, setting the stage for a 2-yard Weare TD run with 2:26 left in the third quarter. Morin’s PAT made it 21-7.
The Capers then got a break on the ensuing kickoff, as the kick was squibbed and Fryeburg Academy bobbled it, allowing junior Sean O’Sullivan to recover the ball for the hosts at the Raiders’ 39.
Cape Elizabeth wouldn’t turn it into points, however, but would milk the clock into the final stanza.
After Glanville ran for nine yards, Hartel hit junior Matt Conley for 10 more and a first down at the 20. Weare ran for six yards, then lost one, but on the play, a personal foul was called and the Capers earned a first-and-goal at the 8. On the next snap, Cape Elizabeth returned the favor with a personal foul and was backed up to the 30. After Weare ran for nine yards and Hartel threw incomplete, Weare gained three yards and Filieo sent senior Hajmil Carr (who sang the national anthem prior to kickoff) on to try a 35-yard field goal, but it missed wide right.
Fryeburg Academy began to drive when Saunders hit senior Scott Parker for a short gain and had 15 yards tacked on for a personal foul, but on a play where Chisari ran for 19 yards, a holding penalty backed the Raiders up to their 34. Saunders then threw incomplete and after Chisari ran for seven yards, Saunders, pressured by junior Jack Tower, threw incomplete, forcing a punt.
After a punt, the Capers started at their 45 and tried to deliver the knockout blow, but again couldn’t find the end zone.
Weare ran for two yards, then picked up four more and a facemask penalty produced a first down at the Fryeburg Academy 44. Weare then ran for five-yards, three-yards, then four more, but on first-and-10 from the 32, Hartel was intercepted by Saunders again at the Raiders’ 5.
Fryeburg Academy then went backwards as Cape Elizabeth’s defense stepped up.
After a false start penalty moved the ball to the 3, Saunders lost two yards, then the quarterback backed up to throw, couldn’t find a receiver and was pushed out of bounds by Weare for a two-point safety, giving the Capers a 23-7 advantage with 4:34 on the clock.
“It was more of a coverage thing, to be honest,” Weare said. “He looked around and pumped it and brought it back down and we were there.”
On the ensuing free kick, Cape Elizabeth started at the Raiders 48 and proceeded to pick up a pair of first downs to run out the clock. Weare ran six times for 15 yards, a personal foul penalty was tacked on and the Capers were able to celebrate their victory.
“We knew we had to step up our intensity from the first snap to the last,” Weare said. “We didn’t let up per se last week, but on certain plays, the fire wasn’t there and we wanted to change that this week. We have to make sure that when we have tough losses, we make it a learning experience and figure out what we need to do to come out on top.”
“At halftime, I told (the guys) the score last week at halftime was 14-7,” Filieo said. “We didn’t have that sense of urgency and we had it this week. We had that nice drive to go up two scores. That was encouraging.”
Cape Elizabeth wound up with 367 yards.
Hartel completed 8-of-15 passes for 220 yards and a touchdown.
“Andrew’s progressed a lot,” Weare said. “He’s got all the talent. He’s becoming the quarterback who can make big plays.”
“Andrew’s development has been incredible,” Filieo said. “He’s still young and is figuring it out, but he’s becoming a leader on that offensive unit. I’m impressed with his progress.”
Weare ran for 125 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 35 carries.
“I like to get the ball,” Weare said. “No problem with that. I want the rock. The line cleaned it up in the second half and got things done.”
“We couldn’t control the line of scrimmage,” said Filieo. “They loaded the box, but we got enough. Ryan is a tough runner and he was able to get enough to put it away.”
Glanville had two receptions for 85 yards and a score and ran seven times for 27 yards.
The Capers did turn the ball over twice and were penalized eight times for 107 yards.
“I told the guys we’d celebrate tonight and I’d chew them out in the morning,” Filieo said. “You can’t win a championship with that many penalties. It’s something that’s plagued us all year and at some point, we have to figure it out. Other than that, I thought our guys did a lot of good things.”
Fryeburg Academy gained 151 yards, but turned the ball over twice. The Raiders were penalized seven times for 29 yards.
Chisari ran 15 times for 82 yards with a touchdown. Saunders completed 4-of-8 passes for 43 yards and an interception.
Fryeburg Academy (now second behind Leavitt in the Class C South Heal Points standings) finishes the regular season at home Saturday of next week when 0-7 Gray-New Gloucester pays a visit.
Cape Elizabeth (third in Class C South) travels to 4-3 York for its finale Friday.
“I feel really good,” Weare said. “We have a lot of first-year varsity starters and everyone has come a long way. We’re optimistic.”
“The Heal Points won’t be in our favor,” Filieo said. “We’ll have to go on the road. We have clean some things up, but the pieces are there.”
Cape Elizabeth senior Ryan Weare pushes forward for extra yardage. Weare gained 125 yards and scored twice on 35 carries.
Cape Elizabeth junior quarterback Andrew Hartel prepares to throw a pass.
Cape Elizabeth senior Jack Glanville breaks the tackle of Fryeburg Academy senior Ryan Hewes en route to a second quarter touchdown.
Cape Elizabeth junior Ethan Convey looks for running room on a kickoff return.
Cape Elizabeth junior Bear Huffard tackles Fryeburg Academy junior quarterback Oscar Saunders.