WALES — The defending champ has picked up right where it left off.

Senior Alex Mace took the game’s second play from scrimmage 60 yards for a touchdown as 2013 Class D champion Oak Hill scored twice before Telstar even ran an offensive play to open the new year with a decisive 47-14 victory Saturday afternoon.

Even though the Raiders entered as the defending champs and Telstar was 2-6 last season, Oak Hill was not about to chalk the game up in the win column just by stepping on the field.

“We don’t like to assume anything,” senior lineman Mikey Pease said. “Anything can happen in a football game — mistakes, flags.”

Mace had a huge first half for the Raiders, scoring on rushes of 60, 3 and 20 yards to go with a 26-yard touchdown reception. He was responsible for 117 of the Raiders’ 167 yards in the first half, and Oak Hill’s first-team offense played just five snaps after the 10:37 mark of the second quarter.

“We just wanted to make plays,” Mace said. “We worked on it all week, added some new plays. We just wanted to exceed in everything we did today.”

Senior Kyle Flaherty added 81 yards and a touchdown on nine carries for Oak Hill, while backup running back Steve Gilbert, a sophomore, popped two long runs en route to 111 yards and two touchdowns on four carries.

Defensively, the Raiders were equally dominant, as they allowed just 37 net yards — 33 of which came in the first half — and three first downs. Both of Telstar’s touchdowns came on kickoff returns.

“The defense played well,” Oak Hill coach Stacen Doucette said. “There’s always room for improvement. We were playing a lot of guys, evaluating and we think we have a lot of depth. Sometimes it’s a tough thing to evaluate, so we were trying to do that today.”

Oak Hill certainly got plenty of time to do that Saturday thanks to its remarkably fast start.

The Raiders began their first drive at their own 39-yard line and ran jet sweep with Mace to the left for a meager 1-yard gain. Mace then tried the same play to the right, but this time managed to turn the corner and race down the sidelines for the 60-yard score.

“The blocking was amazing on that play,” Mace said. “I give all the credit to the line.”

“… They did a great job. I never would have done anything without them. They really set it off this game.”

Oak Hill forced and recovered a fumble on the ensuing kickoff, and six plays later Mace scored from 3 yards out on a drive that began on the Telstar 34-yard line. The Ramblers’ first offensive possession went 4 yards in the wrong direction, leading to a 23-yard punt that netted just 2 yards after junior Kyle Tervo returned it 21 yards to the Telstar 29-yard line.

After two short gains, quarterback Dalton Therrien found a wide open Mace on the right side for a 26-yard touchdown that gave Oak Hill a 19-0 lead just 5:56 into the contest.

On the opening play of the second quarter, Flaherty blocked a punt, which set up Mace’s fourth touchdown of the contest from 20 yards out to give the Raiders a 26-0 lead at the break.

“Alex is a great athlete,” Doucette said. “Alex is a two-dimensional athlete, receiving and running. He has some speed, he has some size and he has some strength. He’s a very coachable kid and an all-around team player.”

Out of the intermission Telstar went three-and-out, and — following a long return from Tervo — Flaherty ran the ball three times for a touchdown on a drive that began on the Rebels’ 34-yard line. The commanding 33-0 lead three minutes into the second half marked the end of the afternoon for Oak Hill’s starters.

Evan Crawley — 621-5640

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Twitter: Evan_Crawley