WATERVILLE — It was the first night game in the history of Waterville Senior High School’s Drummond Field, so of course it had to have a finish unlike anything you’ve seen before.

When Oceanside stopped Waterville at the Mariners’ 35-yard line with 1:24 left, it looked like the Mariners five-point lead was safe. Oceanside tried to run out the clock by taking a knee, but on fourth down, quarterback Brandon Debrosky tried to scramble to run out the final seconds. Although the clock said time expired, the officials ruled there was 2.8 seconds left, giving Waterville time for one play from the Oceanside 21.

Waterville quarterback Cody Pellerin dropped back, and under pressure, took off. He was brought down at the 8, ending the game and giving Oceanside a 33-28 win.

“It was a crazy game. It was pretty scary out there, the last couple of seconds,” Oceanside’s Nate Raye, who scored three touchdowns and had a sack, said.

Oceanside improved to 2-2, while Waterville, which brought the lights in to celebrate homecoming, dropped to 1-3.

“It was a good show. It was a good hard-fought football game that was made possible by the Waterville Football Booster and all their hard work,” Waterville coach Matt Gilley said.

Early on, it looked like the large crowd was going to see an Oceanside blowout. Waterville fumbled the ball away on three of its first four possessions. Oceanside converted the second turnover into a touchdown when Debrosky hit Riley Sprague for a 34-yard touchdown pass, and midway through the first quarter, Raye ran down the left sideline untouched for a 69-yard scoring run and a 14-0 lead.

“I just hit the outside lane and I was gone,” Raye said. “We had three forced fumbles. We played some good defense. We held them in the first half.”

In the first minute of the second quarter, Debrosky connected with Raye for a 64-yard touchdown pass, and the Mariners led 21-0.

“Football comes down to handful of plays. We give up three or four big plays in the first half, and that ended up being the difference, really,” Gilley said.

Waterville got on the board when Demetrius Ramirez scored on a 2-yard touchdown run, cutting Oceanside’s lead to 21-6. After Isaiah Green scored on a 1-yard run to give the Mariners a 27-6 lead, Waterville’s offense began to find some success. Cooper Hart caught a 5-yard pass from Pellerin with 0.8 seconds left in the first half, and when Pellerin had a 5-yard touchdown run a minute into the fourth quarter, Oceanside’s lead was cut to 27-20.

A key to Waterville’s offensive improvement in the second half was better line play, Gilley said.

“Four straight games we’ve had four straight different offensive lines, for various reasons. We coached them up at halftime and they made some adjustments,” Gilley said.

Raye scored his third touchdown, this one on a 3-yard run, to give the Mariners a 33-20 lead with 9:35 left. Waterville answered less than a minute later. After a long Tyler Brown kick return set the Panthers up at the Oceanside 24, Zach Smith caught a 19-yard touchdown pass from Pellerin. Drew Nelson ran in the 2-point conversion, and Oceanside’s lead was 33-28.

Waterville forced the Mariners to punt twice in the final eight minutes, but couldn’t put together a scoring drive to take the lead.

Raye finished with 188 yards of total offense (90 rushing, 98 receiving) to lead Oceanside. Sprague had two catches for 98 yards. Ramirez had 61 yards rushing on nine carries for Waterville.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM


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