FRYEBURG — In a hard hitting game the Fryeburg Academy football team controlled the ball Saturday afternoon to win its home-opener in convincing fashion 26-8 over Westbrook.
The win lifted the Raiders to 2-1 on the young season, while the Blue Blazes fell to 2-1.
It is said that in order to win high school foootball games you must be able to run the ball, and stop the run. Fryeburg followed this formula to a point then opened it up when Westbrook changed its defense to stop the run.
The Raiders run game controlled the ball so effectively in the first half that Westbrook’s offense found themselves on the sideline for much of the first half. The Raiders were dominating play, with their power running game, but found the end zone through the air late in the first quarter. Quarterback Gunnar Saunders fielded a shaky snap, scooped up the ball and found Caleb Micklon with a perfectly flighted pass in the right corner of the end zone on a perfectly-flighted pass over the Blue Blazes’ defense. Tactically it was a thing of beauty executed perfectly.
The two-point attempt was no good.
Westbrook was taken aback by the physicalness of the Raiders. The unique aspect of the three tiered running game is that Caleb Micklon, Hayden Fox and Liam Quinn all have the power to break tackles and continue on down the field — 4 or 5 yards a carry was the ticket for the powerful Raiders
Westbrook returned the kickoff past midfield, but without a run game its attempts to throw were unsuccessful, and Fryeburg forced a punt as the first quarter ended. The Raiders scored twice period in with the first coming on another Saunders pass to Micklon on a 4-yard strike in the left corner of the end zone.
Quinn scored on a 5-yard touchdown run late in the second quarter. Saunders hit Micklon for a successful two-point conversion pass, giving the home team a 20-0 lead at the intermission.
Saunders stretched the lead to 26-0 when he scored on a 5-yard TD run in the third quarter. A two-point rushing attempt was unsuccessful.
The visitors avoided the shutout with three minutes to play on a 23-yard keeper by Thomas Lewis followed by a two-point pass.
The second half was not without outstanding play as Jordan Dutton made some nice catches from his wide receiver position and intercepted the Westbrook quarterback on defense.
Fryeburg is scheduled to host Wells (1-2) this Saturday at 1:30 p.m.
The Warriors, who opened their season with a 44-6 win over Belfast (1-2) on Sept. 3, fell 20-7 to Westbrook on Sept. 10, and 41-0 at home to Leavitt (1-0).
Westbrook is scheduled to host York (2-0) on Saturday at 6 p.m.