BIDDEFORD, Maine — It looked liked the York High School football may have gained some momentum with undefeated Biddeford midway through the third quarter of Friday’s Class B South football game at Waterhouse Field.
The Wildcats, once trailing 21-0, got to within one possession after Trevor LaBonte connected with Andrew Rodrigues on a 21-yard scoring strike, cutting Biddeford’s lead to 21-13 with 7:28 left in the third quarter.
However, whatever momentum the Wildcats had, it quickly evaporated as the Tigers scored 14 points in 51.4 seconds and ran away with a 42-19 victory.
It was the second straight loss for York, which is now 2-3 with four games to play in the regular season.
“As disappointed as I was last week, I am ecstatic this week,” York head coach Randy Small said. “I thought our kids played hard, real hard. We had a couple of busted assignments there in the first half and it cost us on coverage. But you know what? No one has put up more than 14 points against these guys, and we put up 19 and had opportunities to get more. Our kids played hard against the best team in the state in our division. I can go home and sleep on that, no question about it. I am not happy about losing, but I am happy with our kids.”
Biddeford improved to 5-0 and is one of two remaining undefeated teams in Class B South. Kennebunk, at 4-0, is at Mt. Ararat on Saturday.
The Tigers, led by the power running of senior fullback Brady Crepeau (17 carries, 112 yards), ran for 327 yards and had 421 yards of total offense.
“We have a lot of weapons and I don’t think we’ve done a good job of spreading the football around,” Biddeford coach Brian Curit said. “I think we did that tonight. We have an explosive team. I credit York. Coach (Small) always gets those guys to play incredibly hard, and we knew that coming in; he’s an exceptional coach.”
York, trailing 21-6, took the second half kickoff and put forth its best drive of the night, going 80 yards on 10 plays and culminating on the LaBonte to Rodrigues touchdown. LaBonte, who completed 8-of-20 passes for 231 yards on the night, was 4-of-5 on the drive for 68 yards.
“(LaBonte) threw the ball well,” Small said. “They were sending a lot of kids at him and the offensive line picked them up.”
The lone LaBonte mistake of the night happened on a third-and-15 from the York 48 as he was intercepted by Biddeford’s Tommy Thompson. The Tigers took over at their own 25 with 3:48 left in the third, still leading 21-13.
Seven plays later, Crepeau scored on a 32-yard burst up the middle and the Tigers increased their lead to 28-13 with 48.4 seconds left in the third.
The ensuing kickoff went into the end zone and the Wildcats took over at their 20. Rodrigues, who ran for 63 yards on 18 carries, fumbled on first down, giving the ball right back to the Tigers.
It took just three players for Biddeford to put the game out of reach. Cam Lantagne (8 carries, 57 yards) scored his first of two fourth-quarter touchdowns, this one from just 1 yard out, and Biddeford had a 35-13 lead just 3 seconds into the fourth quarter.
York senior Ryan Daley scored on the Wildcats’ next possession, plunging in from the 1 on second-and-goal. The highlight of the drive was LaBonte connecting with Rodrigues (5 catches, 97 yards) on a 63-yard screen pass down the Biddeford sideline.
“I think this was our best effort of the season,” Small said. “We were gamers. I am proud of our kids tonight.”
York (2-3) will look to get back to .500 on Friday when it hosts Westbrook. The Rams improved to 3-2 on Friday with a 60-33 win at home over Noble.