ORONO — The Orono High School football team proved two points Friday night in their Homecoming game against the Foxcroft Academy Ponies.
First, they proved that they are a legitimate LTC contender. Second, they showed that they have good memories.
Motivated by a 70-6 shellacking handed to them by FA in Orono two years ago, the Riots avenged that loss with a convincing 58-14 triumph over the previously undefeated Ponies, who are now 4-1.
It is Orono’s first win over Foxcroft since the 1990s.
The 4-1 Riots made short work of the Ponies, building a 36-0 halftime lead and never looking back.
Orono’s split-T offense racked up 578 total yards, including 492 on the ground on 60 carries.
The offensive line comprised of center Caleb Church, guards Andrew Kelley and Mac Seavey, tackles Tyler Pinkham and Jack Lucy and ends Sam Chase, Tyler Higgins and Tyler Eddy created nice holes for running backs Dominic Mowrer (214 yards on 19 carries), younger brothers Christian (149/18) and Cameron Mowrer (67/6) and Cony High of Augusta transfer Norton Revell (60/5).
“We were able to get a good push and our backs did a great job executing their fakes which makes it easier for us to make our blocks,” said Lucy.
“Our line was blowing them back,” said the speedy and elusive Dominic Mowrer. “All I had was green grass and pylons (at the corners of the end zone).”
The Riots were much quicker than the Ponies.
“We didn’t have an answer for them. They’re a good football team,” said Foxcroft coach Danny White. “Their line was incredible. And when you face a team with two or three backs who can break (a long run) off at any time (it makes things difficult). And the thing I admired was their backs didn’t try to run away from you. They ran at you.”
“We weren’t backing down, “said Dominic Mowrer. “This was our homecoming, not theirs.”
The Riot players said in the loss two years ago, the Ponies went for a two-point conversion after scoring a touchdown to make it 68-6 in the final minutes.
The Riots turned two fumble recoveries into touchdowns in the first half.
Justin Szeker recovered an FA fumble at the FA-15 yard line and Cameron Mower scampered 14 yards for a touchdown on the second play.
Orono marched 55 yards on six plays capped by Dominic Mowrer’s two-yard run to make it 16-0 and Revell made it 22-0 with a dazzling 34-yard run in which he cut back and weaved his way into the end zone.
Cameron Mowrer stripped the ball from a Pony runner resulting in the second fumble and Orono cashed in as senior quarterback threw a seven-yard TD pass to Higgins on the sixth play of the drive.
“It was just a little pop pass (across the middle). (Higgins) was wide open,” said quarterback Bryce Mehnert.
Mehnert threw another TD pass 2:37 later, with just 1:22 left in the half, when fired a perfect 47-yard strike to Eddy at the left pylon just before he absorbed a blind-side hit from a Pony pass rusher.
“Tyler broke open and made a great play,” said Mehnert, who was a perfect five-for-five for 86 yards.
Hard-running Pony halfback Don Boyer, who rushed for 158 yards on 18 carries, ran 63 yards to open the scoring in the second half but Cameron Mowrer answered with a one-yard run.
asnw’s one-yard run and Revell’s 12-yarder expanded the lead.
Ethan Preble fell on a Boyer fumble in the end zone to make it 44-14 before Revell dashed 12 yards for a TD.
Dominic Mowrer returned to the field with the first offensive unit and he capped the scoring with a 38-yard run with just 2:43 remaining.
Mowrer and brother Cameron were among the many standouts on defense for the Red Riots.
“It was important for us to get a win against a good team,” said Orono coach Bob Sinclair who was extremely pleased with his team’s performance.
Boyer, Hunter Law and Alex Stevens were in on a lot of tackles for FA and White praised the play of defensive ends Brent Thomas, Zac Smith and Matt Lacasce.