The Kennebunk High football team used four second half touchdowns to break open a close game and cruise to a 35-6 homecoming victory over York at Veterans Memorial Field.
"Our first drive we came out and scored. That was a big momentum swing for us. It gave us a little more confidence," said Kennebunk coach Joe Rafferty whose team led 7-0 at the half. "I think our kids played pretty solid in the second half."
That big momentum swing came courtesy of a 2-yard touchdown run by senior running back Pat Saunders, giving Kennebunk a 14-0 lead barely four minutes into the second half.
The Rams' defense then came up big when defensive lineman Cole Hoffman picked off a LaBonte pass at the York 15-yard line. Saunders eventually raced in from 6 yards out and Kennebunk led 21-0 late in the third quarter.
Kennebunk kept it going the next time they touched the ball as another senior running back, Nolan Ragnarsson, ran through the middle of the line for a 11-yard touchdown and a 28-0 lead at the start of the final period.
Ragnarsson scored the Rams' last touchdown of the afternoon just three minutes later – a 12-yard scoring scamper that pushed the Kennebunk advantage to 35-0.
York got on the scoreboard later in the quarter when LaBonte tossed a 34-yard touchdown pass to Jake Nelson for the 35-6 final.
It seemed the visiting Wildcats might get on the board first as they drove to the Kennebunk 6-yard line with their second possession of the opening period. But a holding penalty pushed York back to the 21 and a botched hand-off on the next play from scrimmage lost four more yards. The Wildcats were forced to try a 42-yard field goal by Trevor Labonte – his boot had the distance but it was wide right.
The Rams then marched 75 yards to score the only touchdown of the first half. The big plays in the drive were a 19-yard pass play from Tripp Bush to Dante DeLorenzo followed by a 35-yard option run by Bush that got the ball to the York 26 – a penalty against the Wildcats on the play pushed the ball to the 11. Two plays later, Jake Littlefield rumbled in from the 1-yard line and the Rams had a 6-0 lead.
Jared Dyer connected on the first of his five successful PATs and Kennebunk led 7-0 with 10:54 left in the second quarter.
For his efforts during the game, Saunders was selected as the winner of this year's Buckwheat Nedeau Award, given annually to the most valuable Kennebunk player in the homecoming game.
Kennebunk is now 4-0 on the season and they travel to Mt. Ararat (2-2) tomorrow night. York drops to 2-2 and they head to Biddeford (4-0) tomorrow evening.
The Rams and the Tigers are the last two undefeated teams in Class B South.