High school football

Never too late as defense helps Mustangs notch road win

Mount View arrives at venue behind schedule, but scores enough points in time for victory
By Mark Haskell | Oct 01, 2018

Millinocket — The Mount View football team’s road game against Stearns/Schenk on Friday night, Sept. 28, for all intents and purposes, could not have gotten off to a worse start.

“We got up there late because of the bus situation at the school,” said Mustang coach Rick Leary. “So we didn’t get up there until about 6:10 [for a 7 p.m. kickoff], so that changed the whole dynamics of getting warmed up.”

And, not having time to warm up, for the Mustang offense, in particular, proved an issue as the teams were knotted 0-0 at the end of the first half.

“I knew in my heart, and I’ve been coaching a long time, that we were going to make a bunch of mistakes,” said Leary. “I had a feeling. So I warned the kids in advance and said, ‘I think we’re going to make a lot of mistakes today, but it’s how we play out of them.’ ”

And while the offense sputtered in the first half, the defense was lights-out in the second as the Mustangs got a pair of defensive touchdowns and added a third on the ground late in the game as they galloped to a 21-0 victory.

After dropping its first two games, Mount View now rides a three-game win streak and has outscored opponents 81-6 over that span.

On Friday, Kyle Noble scored on an 87-yard interception return for a touchdown, while, not to be outdone, the Mustang defense had an “incredible goal-line stand” that ended when Jack Valleau picked up a fumble on the goal line and rumbled 99 yards for a touchdown to give the visitors a 14-0 lead.

Leary said Noble jumped a route for his interception return that put Mount View on the board.

“He just ended up being in the right spot,” the coach said. “He dropped back in coverage and it was a great interception.

As for Valleau, the coach said, “He just scooped it up and off he went.”

“Our kids are in shape,” he said. “We’ve got a real emphasis on getting in a shape and a real emphasis on tackling. We put a lot of effort in defensively.”

Leary said the Mustangs play well offensively, as well, but “we just have yet to play four quarters of offense.”

“A lot of bad snaps and just bad field position all day,” he said. “But the defense was just lights-out. Defensively we were dynamite, offensively we just never got it together.”

James Thompson added a 20-yard rushing touchdown run late in the game for the ‘Stangs, while Jack Valleau added a two-point conversion and Kyle Ingraham an extra-point ick.

Leading the Mount View defense were Brady Moulton (2 solo tackles, 2 assisted tackles), Oliver Purinton-Brown (2 assists), Garrett Smith (3 solos, assist, quarterback sack), Jack Valleau (8 solos, 2 assists, fumble return for TD, 3 sacks), Kyle Noble (2 solos, 4 assists, interception return for TD, 4 sacks), Joe Lepore (solo, 2 assists, sack), Jacob Nelson (solo, assist), James Thompson (solo, 4 assists), Eric Braley (2 assists, sack), Mark Ward (3 solos, assist), Jason Woods (solo, 2 assists, sack), Gabe Gagnon (solo, 9 assists, 2 sacks), Hayden Hunt (2 solos, 3 assists), Colby Ingraham (assist), Will Turner (solo, assist), Dylan Andersen (solo, 3 assists, 2 sacks) and Sam Valleau (solo, assist).

Mount View is sixth in Class D North, while its next two games — both at home — will be against Ellsworth/Sumner on Saturday, Oct. 6 and Dexter/Piscataquis on Saturday, Oct. 13. Those opponents are fifth and fourth, respectively, in the egion and all three teams hold the same record.

“That’s going to be exciting,” said Leary. “I think we’ll get in there [to the playoffs] and we’ll be playing one of those teams again [in the playoffs]. Hopefully it’ll be as the fourth seed and we’ll have a home-field advantage. That’s our goal. But we’re not looking past anyone. Just one game at a time.”

In the Maine Principals’ Association Heal Point Standings for Class D North, Mount View (3-2, 8.7500 points) is sixth, while Foxcroft Academy of Dover-Foxcroft (5-0, 82.5000 points) is first in the 10-team region. The top six teams qualify for the playoffs.

Courier Publications' sports staff can be reached by email at sports@villagesoup.com or by phone at 594-4401.

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Staff Profile

Mark Haskell
Associate Sports Director
594-4401, ext. 116
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Mark has been covering local sports throughout Knox, Waldo and part of Lincoln county since 2007. Haskell has a bachelor's degree in Mass Communication from the University of Maine and is also a 2000 graduate of Rockland District High School. He has won multiple Maine Press Association awards for writing and photography.

Mark loves iced coffee, cargo shorts, spending time with friends and family and suffers no longer after his beloved Philadelphia Eagles beat the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII.

He resides in Thomaston with his wife Jenn, his sons Beckett and Austin and daughter Lila.

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