Cony’s Reed Hopkins looks for a way around Biddeford’s Kurtis Edgerton during a September 7 game in Biddeford. Portland Press Herald file photo by Ben McCanna

The Cony football team was in good position in the standings at 2-1, and sporting a defense that was among the best in Class B North.

The offense, however, was stuck in neutral. And for B.L. Lippert, the team’s offensive coordinator as well as its head coach, that was a getting to be a particularly nagging flaw.

“The last couple of years our defense has been outstanding. They’ve taken away some of the spotlight from our offense, and that’s fine. When you have a great defense, it’s easier to win games,” he said. “But I’m the one calling (offensive) plays, I’m responsible for drives getting into the end zone.”

Friday night was more like it. After scoring 26 points over their past two games, the Rams broke out for 37 in a win over Lawrence that re-stablished them as a B North favorite.

“It did feel good to see us move the ball pretty successfully,” said Lippert, whose team ran for over 200 yards and got 241 passing yards from Riley Geyer. “The turnover battle really dictates the winner and loser more often than not, and I thought that we did a good job of protecting the football. That gave us the opportunity to sustain drives, and we were able to do so for most of the night.”

Cony, which has often incorporated a heavy dose of screen passes into its gameplan, changed it up on one of the plays that helped break the game open. For years, the Rams have frequently utilized screen passes as a way to move the ball up the field, and Cony appeared to try one in the second half up 17-7, with Geyer starting his motion to deliver the ball to Mike Wozniak.

Meanwhile, Lawrence defenders ran up, with receiver Reed Hopkins stepping in, as always, to block.

“We throw so many screens that teams eventually kind of react up to that,” Lippert said. “We throw a lot where Reed’s out in front blocking. He’s probably our best blocking (receiver), maybe the best we’ve ever had, to be quite honest with you. He’s not the most physical, but his balance, his ability to decide who to block, I comment on it every week in film.”

This time, there was a wrinkle, and it worked. Geyer faked the throw to Wozniak, while Hopkins turned up field past the charging defense.

“Reed went out like he was going to block the corner, and slipped him,” Lippert said. “He got one step on the defensive back, and Riley put it right over the top, right on the money.”

The result was a 30-yard touchdown, one that made the score 24-7 and had Cony off and running to the convincing win.

“It’s been a staple of our offense for five or six years now,” Lippert said. “If you’re going to throw so many screens, you’ve got to have a few different fakes to keep people honest.”

• • •

The wind was breezy at best, gusting at worst, and Gardiner coach Joe White found a way to use it to his team’s advantage.

The Tigers used the squib kick as a weapon in their 44-14 win over Lake Region, giving its returners fits and forcing the Lakers to start drive after drive deep in their own territory while trying to combat a deficit that was growing larger and larger.

Kicking with the wind, Matt Boynton booted his second kickoff in the first quarter through the end zone for a touchback, but as the game wore on, the Tigers had him drill the ball along the ground. It worked; late in the first quarter, Brent Massey picked up the ball and was tackled at the 17-yard line for no gain, and on the last kick of the first half, another Boynton squib slipped by Massey and he was only able to return the ball to the 8-yard line.

In the fourth quarter, Gardiner nearly recovered when another squib bounced toward the end zone and was only returned by Isaac Rawson from the 9-yard line to the 14.

“We played the wind,” White said. “A low squib can bounce and play games with you. (Boynton) just executed that really well tonight. Kick game was big.”

• • •

Cam Michaud was on his way to another breakout game for the Tigers, having run six times for 60 yards and a touchdown, when he limped off the field after a 1-yard run with nine minutes to go in the second quarter.

White said the injury was a knee bruise, and Michaud eventually returned on defense, playing the rest of the game at linebacker. He was done on offense though, which White — whose team scored on that drive to take a 26-0 lead — said was a precaution.

“He’s getting hit pretty hard running the ball,” White said. “But it’s nice to have a multitude of backs that can carry the weight, and Cam knows that. He came to me, it was 26-0, and he goes ‘Coach, you don’t need me on offense.’ And I said ‘You’re probably right.'”

• • •

Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale knew it had a quarterback in Keegan Choate. The Ramblers aren’t lacking in targets for the junior either.

Dylan Lajoie hauled in two touchdown catches for Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale in a 33-29 victory over Poland, while Jevin Smith snagged the game-winning score. The week before, Ryan Baird caught two touchdown passes, while Baird and Beau Schmelzer had scoring grabs in Week 2 against Oak Hill.

Depth can be hard to find in Class D, but coach Dave St. Hilaire said his team has it in the receiving corps, which has also gotten contributions from Gavin Perkins.

“We’ve got guys on the bench that could be teams’ No. 1 receiver,” St. Hilaire said. “If we could put eight receivers on the field at once, we would.”

Drew Bonifant — 621-5638

[email protected]

Twitter: @dbonifantMTM

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