Hornets sting Lake Region, 62-0

LUKE PORTER (right) looks for some running room against the Leavitt defense last Friday night. (Rivet Photo) LEAVITT 62, LAKERS 0 First Downs: LR 3, LVT 12 Penalties: LR 3-30, LVT 5-40 Rushing: LR 34-54, LVT 27-329 Passing: LR 0-6-0, LVT 6-13-172 Total Offense: LRR 54, LVT 501 LR Rushing: Cody Gibbons 15-22, Eric Christensen 7-12, Gunnar Harriman 5-13, Luke Porter 1-5, Cole Jakobs 2-2, Donovan Eaton 2-(4), Trey Turcotte 1-1, Dakota Stover 1-3 LVT Rushing (top rushers): Conor O’Malley 9-119, Nate Coombs 4-105, Nate Rousseau 6-58 LR Tackles (solo, assist, total): Sean Edwards 1-2-3, Quinn Piland 1-1-2, Gunnar Harriman 4-1-5, Cody Gibbons 2-2-4, Cam Harriman 5-0-5, Donovan Eaton 0-2-2, Luke Porter 2-1-3, Ron Hall 1-1-2, Marcus Devoe 1-0-1

LUKE PORTER (right) looks for some running room against the Leavitt defense last Friday night. (Rivet Photo)
LEAVITT 62,
LAKERS 0
First Downs: LR 3, LVT 12
Penalties: LR 3-30, LVT 5-40
Rushing: LR 34-54, LVT 27-329
Passing: LR 0-6-0, LVT 6-13-172
Total Offense: LRR 54, LVT 501
LR Rushing: Cody Gibbons 15-22, Eric Christensen 7-12, Gunnar Harriman 5-13, Luke Porter 1-5, Cole Jakobs 2-2, Donovan Eaton 2-(4), Trey Turcotte 1-1, Dakota Stover 1-3
LVT Rushing (top rushers): Conor O’Malley 9-119, Nate Coombs 4-105, Nate Rousseau 6-58
LR Tackles (solo, assist, total): Sean Edwards 1-2-3, Quinn Piland 1-1-2, Gunnar Harriman 4-1-5, Cody Gibbons 2-2-4, Cam Harriman 5-0-5, Donovan Eaton 0-2-2, Luke Porter 2-1-3, Ron Hall 1-1-2, Marcus Devoe 1-0-1

By Wayne E. Rivet

Staff Writer

Leavitt 62, Lakers 0.

Ouch, that stung!

Top-ranked Leavitt put on a football clinic Friday night at Art Kilborn Athletic Field, showing the home crowd why they were Class B champions four years ago and were state runner-ups in 2010 and 2011.

The Hornets thoroughly dominated Lake Region in every category en route to their fifth straight victory.

Rushing: Hornets rushed for 329 yards to Lake Region’s 54 as Conor O’Malley carried nine times for 119 yards and two TDs, and Nate Coombs blitzed the LR defense for 105 yards on just four carries, including a 50-yard TD.

Passing: Senior quarterback Tyler Chicoine tossed for 172 yards, including touchdown passes of 53 and 15 yards. His only statistical blemish — two interceptions. On the flip side, LR quarterback Douglas Banks was 0-for-5 and Cole Jakobs 0-1.

Punting: Lake Region sophomore Marcus Devoe had plenty of opportunity to work on his punts. He had seven kicks as the Lakers managed just three first downs against a quick, hard-hitting Hornet defensive front.

So for the second time this season, Coach Brian Jahna and his Lakers found themselves on the Class C rollercoaster.

Up a week ago with a thrilling road victory over Gray.

Down this week, hammered by a top contender for the Class C title.

It was déjà vu. Lake Region felt pretty good about themselves after finally breaking the Mountain Valley spell. Then, Yarmouth burst their feel-good bubble the next week, 63-0.

Despite the beat down Friday, Coach Jahna still managed to find a silver lining.

“Our character showed in this football game. It was fantastic. Our seniors stepped up and played their hearts out. When we pulled them, they were right behind the underclassmen supporting them, talking to them, helping them learn their plays, keeping their confidence up,” Coach Jahna said. “Our character developed again this week.”

The coach knew his club was facing a buzz saw, but hoped to contain the Hornets a tad bit better. Leavitt scored on its first three possessions for a 21-0 lead after one quarter and kept on chugging along for a 42-0 advantage at halftime.

“We had some moments when our tackling wasn’t very good. They get to full speed so quick, it was difficult for our guys to make good tackles,” the coach said. “We had moments when we slipped. We’re a young team, and against a group like Leavitt, you expect it,” Coach Jahna said. “We got sloppy at times, for sure.”

Leavitt’s offensive line, anchored by towering senior Matt Powell, who is 6-foot-5 or taller, opened up all kinds of running space for O’Malley, who broke free for 46 yards to set up the first score. Gunnar Harriman, who was kept busy with five stops, made the saving hit. Adam Poulin finished the eight-play, 60-yard drive with a plunge from 1 yard out.

The Hornets went to the air the next time out with Chicoine finding split-end Sam Green for a 38-yard pickup, placing the ball at the LR-5. LR linebacker Cody Gibbons made a big stop on a pitch play on third down, but Nate Rousseau found the end zone on fourth-and-two to make it 13-0 with 4:56 left in the first.

After the Lakers failed to pick up a first down for the third straight possession, Leavitt went back to work with Chicoine hooking up with Green again for a 40-yard bomb on first down. O’Malley scored from four yards out to make it 21-0 with 2:30 left.

Lake Region turned the ball over when running back Eric Christensen was unable to haul in a pitch from QB Banks, which was recovered by Leavitt lineman Derek Moore at the LR-26.

The Hornets returned the favor as Chicoine lofted a high pass that went off the fingertips of tight end Mitchel Davis, who was drilled by Cam Harriman. The ball was intercepted by LR’s Quinn Piland.

Chicoine was intercepted for the second time on the next Hornet possession by Cam Harriman.

But, the Lakers were unable to dig themselves out of a major hole — their own five-yard line. Punter Devoe just barely got a kick off over Powell’s outstretched hand.

Starting at the LR 34, the Hornets went up 28-0 as O’Malley scooted in from 32 yards out.

At 7:03 left in the half, the Lakers recorded their first, first down as Gibbons’ second effort gain four yards. The drive stalled, giving Leavitt the ball back at their own 32. Following a Rousseau 18-yard pickup, Nate Coombs found daylight on the outside and turned the burners on for a 50-yard TD sprint.

Leavitt added another score, a 53-yard bomb from Chicoine to Green for a 42-0 lead at intermission.

The Hornets rolled out their starting offense to start the third quarter, and it resulted in a 15-yard TD pass, Chicoine to Alex Gilbert. With the game clock running, Leavitt’s Rousseau scored from 17 yards out to start the fourth quarter, making it 56-0.

Reserve Billy Bedard, a sophomore, was the last Hornet to reach paydirt with a 15-yard run with 1:42 left in the game.

When asked what his players and coaching staff could take away from a 62-0 shellacking, Coach Jahna simply said, “Measure up and learn.”

“Can we learn some things from this game? No doubt about it. Not just when the game starts, you can see the difference during pre-game — the way they sprint from station to station. That’s where we are trying to get to, where certainly not there by any stretch,” Coach Jahna said. “Any time we can take the field against a program that is functioning as well as Leavitt, you can watch and learn.”

Coach Jahna added, “I don’t need to sugarcoat it. When you can maintain your composure and character on the sideline, you are able to see those things and learn from it. When you are huffing and puffing, turning on your teammates because things aren’t going well, you don’t see and learn. Our guys have turned the corner and are learning. That’s a big difference (than in the past). Despite the score, we held together as a team. They are hard to run the ball against. We tried to throw it, and it didn’t work.”

Next: The Lakers travel to Freeport on Saturday to meet the Falcons at 1:30 p.m. Freeport (2-3) is coming off a 42-22 loss to Cape Elizabeth. The Falcons beat Gray-NG 18-12 and Poland 7-0, while losing to Spruce Mountain (53-20) and Wells (40-23). The Falcons are led by running backs Joe Nixon (600 yards a year ago) and Ben MacMillan (530).

“We need to play our type of solid football. Be character-driven. Assignment-driven. They are a good football team. I think we match up well, and it should be a good football game,” Coach Jahna said. “We need to be physical and play together.”

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