For the second time in two years, the Belfast Area High School football team earned a spot in the coveted regional playoffs and, following an upset victory over a higher-seeded road opponent in the quarterfinals, the Lions made their final stand of the season in the semifinals against a talented foe.

That scenario played out on a cold, breezy Saturday afternoon, Nov. 9 as No. 5 Belfast (6-4) lost to No. 1 Winslow (8-1) 39-14 in an Eastern Class C semifinal playoff game.

The Black Raiders led 12-7 in a highly-competitive first half; however, the hosts outscored the visitors 27-7 the rest of the way for the solid victory. At one point, in fact, the game was 18-14 before Winslow tallied 21 unanswered points.

Click for photos from the game.

Watch video below.

Winslow's grueling ground attack was led by Dylan Hapworth (217 yards, 3 touchdowns) and Zack Guptill (197 yards, 3 TDs) as the teammates combined for 414 yards via the rush.

The Black Raiders also featured a no-huddle offense for much of the game, particularly in the second half as the visitors appeared to run out of gas down the stretch.

Belfast received the game's opening kick but was forced to punt. The Black Raiders then moved the ball down the field in their first possession with Hapworth and Guptill carrying the load, but a pass tipped at the goal line by Belfast was intercepted by Mike McFadden, who brought the ball back to the Winslow-21 with 7:07 left in the first quarter.

After Belfast could do nothing with its second possession, Winslow got on the board when Guptill scored on a 1-yard rush with 4:07 remaining in the opening stanza. The extra-point kick failed.

Belfast again could do nothing with its next possession but bad fortune turned to good luck when punter Alex Canning bobbled the snap and ended up running for a first down. On the next play, Korey Doolan caught about a 30-yard pass, which set up first-and-10 at the 12-yard line.

However, the drive stalled to start the second quarter as Zach Collier's fourth-and-13 pass into the end zone to Tyler Tran was incomplete.

Winslow took a 12-0 lead after a drive that culminated with a 1-yard run by Guptill with 8:01 left in the second quarter. The hosts attempted to score two points following the TD, but fumbled. Hapworth converted a key fourth-and-2 on the scoring drive.

Belfast's next possession was a quick and productive one that started with an 8-yard run by Greg Clark and ended with a 64-yard TD run by Clark up the middle, as he made a couple of nifty cuts and was gone. Ashley Littlefield added the extra-point kick with about six minutes to go in the half.

Clark had rushed for 247 yards against Foxcroft Academy the previous week after suffering a strained medial collateral ligament (MCL) during the team’s regular-season finale against Camden Hills.

Trailing 12-7 Saturday against Winslow, Belfast went for an onside kick after Clark's score, but did not gain possession of the ball. Thus, Winslow secured the ball at midfield, but fumbled on the first play and Belfast recovered with 5:47 left until halftime.

However, Winslow forced a turnover with about 20 seconds left in the half after the Black Raiders sacked Lion quarterback Collier.

That ended 24 competitive minutes, before Winslow took control late in the second half, but more specifically in the fourth quarter.

Winslow scored on its first possession of the second half with 9:55 remaining on a 10-yard run by Hapworth to make it 18-7. Before the game could get out of hand, Belfast made it 18-14 when Andrew Goguen converted a fourth-and-1 play with a 50-yard jaunt, and the Lion followed that with a 5-yard TD scamper to make it 18-13. Littlefield kicked the extra point and it once again was a ballgame with 7:39 left in the third quarter.

However, from that point it was all Black Raiders as the hosts outscored the Lions 21-0 the rest of the way.

Hapworth had a 15-yard scoring run and kicked the extra point with 5:29 left in the third quarter to make it 25-14. The hosts added a pair of fourth-quarter scores as Guptill had a 4-yard touchdown run and Hapworth added a 5-yard run into the end zone.

The Lions had beaten No. 4 Foxcroft Academy in Dover-Foxcroft 26-13 Nov. 1 in the regional quarterfinals. The Ponies (5-4) were the defending state Class C champions.

Belfast and Winslow dropped from Eastern Class B to Eastern Class C this season following the creation of four classes — A, B, C and D — in Maine high school football.

The Lions lost to the Black Raiders 26-12 in the teams' lone regular-season battle Sept. 7 in Winslow.

Previously, the Lions and Ponies played a classic earlier in the season as host Foxcroft Academy picked up a 28-27 win Sept. 20 during the host’s homecoming celebration.

Belfast finished the season outscoring opponents 296-182, with one shutout, in 10 games. Winslow, which received a first-round playoff bye, has outscored foes 351-128, with one shutout, in nine games.

The Black Raiders won their first seven regular-season games this fall, but lost to No. 2 and across-the-river rival Waterville 25-21 in the season finale before bouncing back Saturday with a home playoff win over the Lions.

Last year in the Eastern Class B playoffs, No. 7 Belfast stunned No. 2 Leavitt of Turner 20-17 in the quarterfinals and lost to No. 6 Waterville 31-14 in the semifinals, both road affairs for the Lions.