Oceanside, Troy Howard lock horns in competitive finaleMariners tackle unbeaten overall campaign
Rockland — Oceanside and Troy Howard of Belfast capped strong fall seasons on the gridiron with a competitive, down-to-the-wire Eastern Maine Middle School Football League game Tuesday afternoon, Oct. 22 amid rain and overcast conditions at Wasgatt Field.
Watch video below.
The host Mariners, coached by John McGonagle, won 14-8 in back-and-forth battle for precious field position. The young Lions from Belfast are coached by Stan Sturgis.
After a scoreless first half, Oceanside converted on a quarterback sneak by Titus Kaewthong to make it 6-0 (the two-point conversion kick was blocked) before the visiting Lions took an 8-6 advantage when Jacob Racioppi raced 77 yards to paydirt and also kicked the two-point conversion.
In middle school a run or pass into the end zone following a TD is worth one point and kick, which is more difficult for that age-group, worth two points (just the opposite at higher levels of football).
Troy Howard appeared back in business when Racioppi recovered his own onside kick to give the Lions the ball back. However, Oceanside's defense was up for the test and held the Lions.
The Mariners then scored the winning touchdown with 17 seconds remaining in the contest, as Kaewthong looked to pass but then scampered into the end zone. Kaewthong also kicked the two-point conversion for the 14-8 final.
Oceanside includes Oliver Vanorse-Jones, Connor McGonagle, Logan Sheridan, Micheal Norton Jr., Kirt Ilvonen, Harrison McKnight, Hunter Davis, Alex McLaughlin, Jack Freeman, Rueban Martinez, Titus Kaewthong, Keanu Campbell, Silas Miller, Ben Ripley, Zach Cody, Bennett Penney, Sebastin Sanfilippo, Cooper Wirkala, Jacob Curtis, Alex Fogarty, Brennan Harris, Seth Sweet, Nick Viles, Jacob Westin and Alex OBrien.
Troy Howard includes Andrew Akles, Jarod Anderson, Tyler Bartlett, Hunter Blakesley, Zach Bormet, Patrick Curtis, Jared Drinkwater, Aaron Fuller, Conner Gould, Sam Goguen, Wendal Grotton, Konner Harford, Tyson Hill, John Landers, Ethan Mitchell, Carter Patterson, Skylar Perkins, Jacob Racioppi, Trey Reed, Charles Resh, Donald Resh, Artem Richter, Nick Salvatore, Anthony Sanborn, Ben Sniger, Stan Sturgis, Christan Sukeforth, Hunter Thompson, Tylor Curtis, Asa Hayes and Taylor Kinney.
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Ken Waltz has been member of the media 30 years and has received hundreds of Maine Press Association and New England Press Association awards for his writing, photography and page design. He studied journalism at the University of Maine in Orono. He lives in South Thomaston with his wife, Sarah. The couple has an adult son, Brandon.
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