BRUNSWICK — The Winthrop/Monmouth football team brought a new coach and a smattering of new players — some thrust into key roles — to its season opener Saturday afternoon against an old rival, Lisbon.

As is often the case when the Ramblers and Greyhounds get together, the game featured big plays, comebacks and a tension-filled fourth quarter.

“There’s a lot of history there,” Lisbon coach Dick Mynahan said, “and both teams showed up.”

But it would be the Greyhounds who walked away with the victory, a 28-24 decision in a game moved to Brunswick High School because the Lisbon field wasn’t ready for use.

Lisbon four-year starting quarterback Kyle Bourget enjoyed a big day, completing 7 of 11 passes for 141 yards and a touchdown. He also rushed for 36 yards and a touchdown on six carries.

“We made some plays,” Bourget said. “I know I had all day to throw.”

Added Mynahan: “Kyle has found himself as a quarterback. He was the impact player of the game.”

Lisbon, which led 28-8 at the half before it was forced to stave off the persistent Ramblers in the final two quarters, gained 334 yards of total offense. Sophomore Noah Francis rushed for a team-high 63 yards and a touchdown on 16 carriers. Shawn Grover rushed for 45 yards on 18 carries.

The Ramblers (0-1), meanwhile, gained just 69 yards in the first half, but clawed back in the game after the intermission. New quarterback Matt Ingram completed 7 of 9 passes for 114 yards. He also threw a 7-yard touchdown pass to Bennett Brooks just three minutes into the third quarter to pull the Ramblers within 28-14. Dakota Carter rushed for the two-point conversion to make it 28-16.

Zack Phinney rushed for a team-high 77 yards and a pair of touchdowns to pace the Ramblers. His 5-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter helped Winthrop/Monmouth inch closer at 28-24.

“We had some jitters in the first half,” said Winthrop coach Dave St. Hilaire, who took over for new athletic director Joel Stoneton. “We have young guys filling big roles. It took us a half to settle down. It took us too long to adjust. But it’s something to build on.”

Lisbon threatened to turn the season opener into a blowout early.

Francis rushed for a 5-yard touchdown and then Tyler Halls caught a nice 39-yard touchdown pass from Bourget as the Greyhounds went up 14-8 after the first quarter.

Grover and Bourget rushed for touchdowns in the second quarter to extend the lead to 28-8.

However, nine penalties and four turnovers nearly did in the Greyhounds.

“We made a lot of mistakes,” Mynahan acknowledged.

Those mistakes, coupled with a few nice throws from Ingram, helped the Ramblers bounce back in the second half.

“We thought we could attack them with the pass,” St. Hilaire said. “In the second half we seemed to have them on the run. It just wasn’t enough.”

Bill Stewart — 621-5618

[email protected]

Twitter: @billstewartmtm

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