HEBRON — Many of the players participating in the Maine Shrine Lobster Bowl were captains of their high school teams. With that comes a beneficial side effect.

“We have good leadership on both sides of the ball,” Gardiner’s Dennis Meehan, a member of the East squad, said.

That leadership came in handy during a grueling training camp in which temperatures reached 90 degrees. Now that it’s time to play the 24th annual Maine Shrine Lobster Bowl, that leadership can manifest itself in game situations.

Proceeds from the Lobster Bowl benefit Shriner’s hospitals. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. at Waterhouse Field in Biddeford. The West has won the last two games, and leads the all-time series, 17-6. Last season’s 48-24 win by the West was the first Lobster Bowl since 2007 to be decided by more than a touchdown.

With the offensive firepower on each team, this could be another high scoring game.

Quarterbacking the East is Mt. Blue’s Jordan Whitney, who threw for more than 1,700 yards and 29 touchdowns during the Cougars run to the Class B state title. Among the receivers Whitney will throw to are Cony’s Brandon St. Michel and Chandler Shostak, who was a finalist for the Fitzpatrick Trophy last fall.

“Shostak, he’s quick, he has good hands,” Whitney said. “All the receivers here, there’s so much talent.”

“(Whitney’s) a great quarterback,” Shostak said.

Chad Luker will play tight end for the East, and could see some carries in short yardage situations. Anthony Sementelli of Lawrence, Jared Jensen of Brunswick, and Leavitt’s Brian Bedard lead the East’s running backs. Skowhegan’s Alex Baker will be on the East’s offensive line, along with Tom Cox of Waterville, who suffered an ankle injury on the first day of camp and hopes to play.

Lawrence’s Spencer Carey lead the East’s secondary, and is joined by Meehan and Maine Central Institute’s Patrick Noonan. Bradley Jackson of Mt. Blue will play linebacker. Among central Maine players on the East defensive line are Ryan Malcom of Madison, Eriq Stewart of Lawrence, and Messalonskee’s Jake Stinson.

The East defense must contend with a West offense led by running back Don Goodrich, who won the Fitzpatrick Trophy last season after a strong season for Cheverus, and quarterbacks Dillon Russon of Scarborough and Jake Desrocher of Massabesic. Sanford’s Alex Shain, a FItzpatrick Trophy finalist, will also see carries for the West.

“We have a lot of talent in the backfield. We might as well use all our weapons, I think,” Maranacook’s Andrew Lachance, a West tight end, said.

Among the West offensive linemen is Winthrop’s Zach Nadeau, and Oak Hill’s Caleb Provost. Playing for the West defense is defensive lineman Brock Deschaine of Winslow.

“We’ve been practicing hard. We hope to give them a good game. It’s for a good cause,” Deschaine said.

For many players, this is their final football game. To Stinson, that means one thing.

“You’ve got to play your (butt) off,” Stinson said.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

 

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