(Ed. Note: For the complete Greely-Westbrook game story, with additional photos and a detailed box score, please visit theforecaster.net)
Falmouth, Greely and Yarmouth’s football teams all had very good showings last weekend.
The unheralded Rangers took a 2-1 record to Westbrook and as they did a year ago at the same venue, let the world know they’re a legitimate contender.
Westbrook took an 8-0 lead late in the first quarter and appeared to have the momentum, but it turned in an instant as Connor Hanley took the ensuing kickoff and returned it 84 yards to paydirt to get Greely going.
“We work hard all week long,” Hanley said. “Sometimes in games you face adversity, but we know if we get down in a game, we have to keep fighting. I took the kickoff and just found a hole. It was that simple. It was all blocking. I just ran in a straight line.”
Then, the Rangers’ defense came up with a huge stop, giving the ball back to the offense, which proceeded to drive 92 yards to take the lead for good on a touchdown run from Will Peck.
Greely was just getting warmed up and by halftime, was in command, up, 27-8, thanks to a 9-yard scoring run from Matt Pisini and a 24-yard TD pass from Pisini to Sam Peck.
“It started to click,” Pisini said. “I owe it all to the linemen. The blockers opened up holes everywhere.”
Senior James Ferrar then ruled the second half, milking the clock and setting the stage for two more scores, a 5-yard Sam Peck run and a 20-yard Ferrar scamper.
“My coach told me they were going to run me,” Ferrar said. “I was pumped. I was ready to go.”
The Rangers’ defense slammed the door from there and Greely enjoyed a stunningly decisive 41-8 triumph, its third in a row.
“The hype’s on the other teams,” Hanley said. “Every year, we lose players, but we have good players and we had to come out and show it. I think this was a symbolic win.”
“I’m stunned the way the kids reacted,” said Rangers coach David Higgins. “Westbrook’s a good team, but the kids just came to play. Our kids are tough. I’m so proud of these guys. I’m surprised how quickly they’ve come along.”
Greely’s remaining road is fraught with potential potholes. Friday, the Rangers play at dangerous 4-0 Kennebunk (which beat defending regional champion Marshwood last week). Home games versus York and high-powered Cony follow before Greely closes at rival Falmouth.
As the Rangers reminded us again Friday, don’t bet against them.
“Everybody will start to notice us,” said Hanley. “We have to keep working. Every week we set our goals and work toward them for that Friday. Even if a loss comes, we’ll keep getting better.”
“We’ll take the positives from every game,” Pisini said. “There’s still a lot to work on.”
“We know Kennebunk will throw it,” Higgins added. “We’ll have our hands full. We have to focus on them. They give us a plethora of issues we’ll need to worry about. We have work to do.”
Falmouth, coming off its first loss, got back in the win column and improved to 3-1 with an emphatic 55-6 romp at Oceanside.
Three TD runs from Storm Covens made it 21-0 Yachtsmen after one period and they never looked back. A pair of Noah Nelson touchdown passes (one to Justin Rogers, one to Matt Edmonds) made it 34-0 at the half. Nelson hit Rogers again in the third period, Falmouth added a safety, I.V. Stucker returned a punt for a score and Sean Bryant got in on the fun with a TD run and Falmouth cruised to victory.
The Yachtsmen hope to earn another win when they go to 2-2 Westbrook Friday night. Last year, Falmouth lost at home to the Blue Blazes, 32-12.
Yarmouth made its first trip to what coach Chris Pingitore called “the Holy Grail of Maine high school football,” Hosmer Field in Rumford, to face Mountain Valley. The teams had no history, but the Clippers quickly made some, in positive fashion, with a decisive 34-0 win, to improve to 3-1.
Matt Klepinger got it started with a 47-yard TD run. A Brady Neujahr to Matt Woodbury 10-yard touchdown pass made it 14-0 after one quarter. Klepinger’s 4-yard TD run made it 21-0 at halftime. Woodbury returned the opening kickoff of the second half 79 yards for a touchdown and Cody Cook ran for a 47-yard score to account for the final score.
Yarmouth outgained Mountain Valley, 347 yards (290 on the ground) to 101. Klepinger ran for 104 yards and two TDs on seven carries. Neujahr completed 6 of 13 passes for 57 yards and a score.
The Clippers now have the daunting task of hosting Wells (3-1) for the first time, Friday evening.
Freeport went to powerhouse Wells Friday for a first-ever meeting with the Warriors. The Falcons were on a high after winning two in a row, but they caught the Warriors in a bad mood after they lost at Cape Elizabeth the week before.
Wells jumped to a 13-0 lead after one quarter, holding Freeport to just two yards of offense. By late in the first half, the Falcons trailed, 40-0, but a long scoring pass from Eli Fox to Jake Perry got them on the board. Freeport made things interesting in the second half with a pair of touchdowns and a field goal, but the Falcons dropped to 2-2 with a 40-23 loss.
Freeport plays host to 2-2 Cape Elizabeth (coming off a lopsided loss at Spruce Mountain) Saturday at 3 p.m. The teams have no history.
Greely senior James Ferrar bulls over a Westbrook tackler en route to a 115-yard, one-touchdown evening Friday as the Rangers dominated the Blue Blazes, 41-8.
Greely senior Dylan Rasch buries a Westbrook ballcarrier during Friday’s victory.