BANGOR, Maine — All the way from Lewiston to Bangor, Wes Myers was reminding his team-mates about last season’s game against the Rams.
When the bus arrived at Cameron Stadium, he was reminding them. As they were putting on their uniforms and pads, he continued reminding them. With his team leading 22-7 at halftime, he kept reminding them.
Only when his visiting Blue Devils were watching the final seconds wind down on their 43-20 football victory over Bangor did Myers stop reminding and start celebrating.
“The kids we have in our line now are young, so coach and I kept telling them how we had Bangor down 21-0 last year and they still came back to beat us,” Myers said. “I just let ’em know we had to come out and hit ’em this week, and they did it.”
Lewiston’s offensive line has just one senior member, three juniors and a sophomore, but they played like veterans as they paved the way for a devastating ground attack that produced 296 yards.
The 6-0 Devils’ senior tailback accounted for 247 of those yards and had three touchdowns while averaging 5.7 yards per rush over 43 carries.
“He’s the best back we’ve seen. I think he’s also the most complete. He was tough,” Rams coach Mark Hackett said. “You can’t mimic what he does in practice. He steps, and then goes out around. He’s quicker than anything we’ve seen.”
Things couldn’t have started out much better for the 2-4 Rams as they took the opening kickoff and drove 57 yards in 13 plays and scored on a 17-yard touchdown run by Adam Billings.
The celebration didn’t last long, however, as the Devils answered with a 12-play, 50-yard drive capped by Myers’ 1-yard TD run off left tackle. His two-point conversion rush with 1:37 left in the first quarter gave Lewiston an 8-7 lead and the Rams would never lead again.
Lewiston took advantage of a Rams fumble at their own 35-yard line and scored five plays later on Myers’ 8-yard TD run six seconds into the second quarter. The Devils took a 22-7 lead into halftime after Cody Dussault caught a 9-yard TD pass off a bootleg rollout by quarterback Ronnie Turner with 26 seconds left in the half.
After the Devils started the second half by driving 65 yards in 10 plays and scoring to make it 28-7, Bangor got back in it via a 55-yard TD run by Lonnie Hackett. He broke to the left and then simply outran everyone down the left sideline to make it 28-14 with 7:27 left in the third.
The Rams stopped an 11-play Devils’ drive at the B-7 and drove all the way to the L-27 before Jeff Keene intercepted Rams QB Joe Seccareccia in the left flat and returned the ball 70 yards for a touchdown with 29 seconds left in the third.
So much for a repeat of last year’s comeback.
“It looked like we were going to be back in the game and then that happened,” said Mark Hackett. “I even said down the stretch that I was hoping that [2007 comeback] would get in their mind, but then the interception happened. That really was the key play, I think.”
While there may be doubt as to the key play, there’s none over who the key player was.
“They’re better than us, or at least they were tonight. They certainly have the best player. That’s obvious,” Hackett said. “He’s tenacious, he’s hungry, and we couldn’t tackle him.”
Myers credited his young line of center Jacob Tanguay, guards Joe Bussiere and Kris Gagne and tackles Brady Esty and Ben Wigant for his success.
“The line did a very good job. I give it to my linemen because they did it,” said Myers. “This is the biggest road win for us since I’ve been here. I’m just really happy to win this.”
While Bangor tailback Hackett was no slouch either, rushing for 180 yards and two TDs on 16 carries, Bangor’s passing game could do very little against the Devils.
Seccareccia completed just six of 14 passes for 56 yards while being intercepted twice.
“I think we have the best secondary in the league and we did a great job on their passing game tonight,” said Myers, who also plays defensive back.