Mount Desert Island High School running back Colby Lee stiff-arms an Oceanside High School player during his 51-yard touchdown run in Friday’s quarterfinal playoff game. Trojans won 48-14 over the Mariners to qualify for semifinals. PHOTO COURTESY OF BARRY GUTRADT

MDI takes down Mariners

BAR HARBOR — The Mount Desert Island High School varsity football team overpowered the Oceanside High School Mariners for the second time this season, in a quarterfinal playoff on Friday, Oct. 30.

With a 48-14 win on their home turf, the Trojans earned a place for themselves in the semifinal game against defending state champions Winslow High School this Saturday.

The Trojans won the coin toss and elected to receive. They notched their first touchdown just 22 seconds into the game when Taner Bickford took the first handoff and charged for 70 yards to score.

Drew Rich’s point-after attempt was successful. With 11:38 left in the first quarter, MDI led 7-0.

As the chilly wind strengthened, so did the Trojan’s defense. They forced the Mariners to punt after six plays, took over on their own 38-yard line and immediately charged for another touchdown.

Bickford’s four-yard run and Rich’s extra-point kick took the score to 14-0 with a little under four minutes left in the first quarter.

The Trojan’s third touchdown of the quarter came when Colby Lee ran the ball in from 51 yards out. With another extra-point kick from Rich, MDI was up 21-0.

“I was really happy with the way the kids came out early in this game and took care of business,” head Coach Mark Shields said. “We were able to get those scores and get some momentum going, and that was good for us.”

The second quarter started just as strong for the Trojans. They forced Oceanside to punt, took over on their own 46-yard line and notched another touchdown.

Croix Albee ran in from one yard out, and Rich made another successful extra point kick to take the Trojan score to 28-0 with 9:59 left in the half.

MDI’s fumble recovery on Oceanside’s next possession led to Bickford’s third touchdown on the night. The senior running back sprinted in from the 30-yard line, and Rich’s extra point attempt was good, increasing the Trojan’s lead to 35-0 with 7:48 left in the first half.

Two minutes later, the Oceanside Mariners were forced to punt the ball, and Rich’s 60-yard punt return for a score and the extra point on the kick took the Trojan’s lead to 42-0 at the end of the half.

Shields used the generous lead to substitute players. When his team gets ahead in the first half, especially with a big score, he said he wants the substitutes to get some playing time. “We don’t want our starters to get hurt [and] we want [substitutes] to get some experience and get them ready for next year,” he said. “It’s important to get those kids in the game.”

The Mariners scored two touchdowns after a scoreless third quarter. With two minutes left in the game, MDI still led 42-14.

The Trojan’s Billy Kerley finished the scoring for MDI with a 45-yard touchdown run in the final minutes of the game. Rather than adding to their leading score, MDI took a knee for the two-point conversion. The quarterfinal playoff ended with the score of 48-14.

“It was an important win for us this season,” said Shields. “We were proud of what we accomplished in the regular season, but our goal was to do well in the playoffs.”

The Trojans are set to travel to Winslow to take on the undefeated and defending state champion Black Raiders on Saturday, Nov. 7, at 1 p.m.

Amanat Khullar

Amanat Khullar

Amanat Khullar is a sports reporter for the Mount Desert Islander. She comes from New Delhi, the capital city of India and graduated from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.

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