WINSLOW — Once the ball is kicked off, a game plan can change, sometimes for the better. It did for the Winslow High School football team Saturday against Mt. Desert Island.
Winslow head coach Mike Siviski said the plan entering the game was to put the ball in the air more, but once he saw the success the Black Raiders had on the ground, airing it out didn’t make sense.
Dylan Hapworth and Zach Guptill combined for 330 yards rushing and six touchdowns on 45 carries for Winslow, as the Black Raiders grinded out a 49-18 win over the Trojans. Winslow improved to 3-0, while MDI is 2-1.
“We had intended to do quite a few different passes, but the nature of the game, we never did get into it,” Siviski said. “Guptill ran with power, and Hapworth ran with speed. It was a nice one-two punch for us.”
Defensively, the Black Raiders did a nice job containing MDI’s powerful running game. The Trojans broke a handful of big plays, including touchdown runs of 55 and 80 yards by Teagan Candage in the first half, but for the most part, the Black Raiders controlled the line of scrimmage and kept the Trojans in check.
“We practiced all week, and we knew what they were going to do on offense,” said Winslow defensive tackle Aaron Lint, who did a great job clogging up the middle and recovered an MDI fumble in the fourth quarter. “We attacked the ball. Everything was big.”
Candage (15 carries for 165 yards) broke down the right sideline for his 55-yard touchdown run on MDI’s third play from scrimmage, giving the Trojans a 6-0 lead midway through the first quarter. Winslow answered quickly. On the third play of the ensuing drive, Hapworth (23 carries for 175 yards) went 49 yards for a touchdown. He kicked the extra point, and Winslow had the lead for good.
“Our offensive line, they’re here to play. They’re pretty good,” Hapworth said.
Forty-four seconds into the second quarter, Guptill (22 carries for 155 yards) scored on a 13-yard run, and Hapworth ran in the 2-point conversion on a fake kick. On the first play of the next drive, Candage went 80 yards for a touchdown, and it was 15-12, Winslow with 11:02 left in the first half.
“We’d play pretty strong defense for two or three plays, then they’d bust one. (Candage) was outstanding,” Siviski said.
Candage’s long runs were rare breakdowns by the Winslow defense, which did a nice job playing assignment football.
“That must have been the perfect defense for that type of offense. We played our roles. We screwed up a few times,” Hapworth said. “If you didn’t pay attention to your assignment, something bad was going to happen.”
Hapworth scored on a 12-yard run midway through the second quarter, and Winslow led 22-12 at the half. Hapworth added touchdown runs of 5 and 30 yards in the third, pushing Winslow’s lead to 36-12.
After Taner Bickford’s 6-yard touchdown run cut Winslow’s lead to 36-18, Guptill scored on a 4-yard run early in the fourth quarter. Despite the success on the ground, the Black Raiders made some mistakes, losing four fumbles.
“There’s stuff we have to clean up,” Siviski said. “As our line improves, our offense will improve. Our line did a nice job.”
MDI quarterback Jon Phelps ran for 50 yards, and threw for 62.
Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242