BELFAST — The Belfast football team — after a tough week-one outing — were happy to be back at Dennis “Bear” Bryant Field on Saturday afternoon, Sept. 11 as the Lions hosted Nokomis of Newport in a high school gridiron battle.

The Lions got a “great team effort” on the day and touchdown from Andrew Abelon, which proved enough to edge the visiting Warriors 7-6.

Zepherin Leppanen, who also scored the lone goal in the boys soccer team’s 4-1 loss on Friday, Sept. 10 on the same field, booted the extra point, which proved pivotal for the Lions in the one-point win.

“[It was a] very evenly-played game,” said Art Fairbrother, who took over as the Lions’ head coach for Brian Goff prior to the start of the first regular-season game, a 44-6 road lost to Wells. “Pete Lovejoy led the defense with two interceptions and Elias Higgins had one interception. Our offense is starting to find a rhythm. Looking forward to improving every game this year.”

On Saturday, Nokomis scored in the second quarter to take a 6-0 lead before the Lions responded in the third.

Abelon scored on a 40-yard end around and found the end zone to knot the score, while Leppanen gave the team a 7-6 advantage.

That score held for the Lions, who secured their first win of the season.

Gabe Kelley added 82 yards on the ground for Belfast, while Rico Washington added 37 yards receiving. Quinton Roberts also had a strong effort on the defensive side of the ball with 10 tackles.

In the team’s 44-6 road loss to Wells to begin the regular season on Sept. 3, Lovejoy scored the lone touchdown for the visitors after hauling in a 60-yard touchdown from quarterback Keegan McGowan.

MaineStay Media/VillageSoup sports staff can be reached by email at