BANGOR, Maine – The Bangor High School rushing attack paced the Rams to a 55-21 win over the Lewiston High School Blue Devils in an Eastern Maine Class A football quarterfinal at Cameron Stadium on Saturday afternoon behind a 311-yard, four-touchdown effort from senior running back Logan Lanham.
Sophomore running back Dane Johnson added 88 yards and two scores, senior quarterback/defensive back Xavier Lewis returned a kickoff nearly 60 yards for a touchdown and fueled a defense that forced five turnovers to propel No. 4 Bangor (5-4) to a semifinal matchup against No. 1 Cheverus High School next Saturday.
“We’ve been waiting all year to pop,” Bangor head coach Mark Hackett said. “We were young when we started but we’re not young anymore and we played a real good football game.”
“It was my last game [at Cameron Stadium],” Lanham said. “It means a lot because I grew up on this field. I couldn’t leave anything with me – I had to leave every single bit of it on the field.”
The Rams took a 28-14 lead into halftime thanks to a heavy dose of Lanham and Johnson on the ground and Lewis’ touchdown return midway through the second quarter.
Lanham punched in the game’s first score on a 34-yard run that capped off an 80-yard drive midway through the first quarter. After the Blue Devils (3-6) could muster nothing on their first two possessions, senior quarterback Eddie Emerson connected with senior wideout Ben Howell on a 9-yard TD pass to open the second quarter.
After Lewis’ return put Bangor back on top 14-7 and the Rams forced a punt, Lanham ran one in from 30 yards out on the first play of the next drive to extend the lead to 14. Lewiston answered with some trickery on a 62-yard score to Howell. Emerson threw a screen to junior running back Quintarian Brown who then heaved the ball downfield where Howell was waiting to take it to the house.
After Lanham ran in his third score of the half, Lewis sealed the 28-14 halftime lead when he picked off Emerson at his own 15-yard line with seconds remaining before intermission.
Bangor outgained the Blue Devils 294-172 in the opening half before relying on its defense in the second. The Rams would finish with a 491-346 advantage in total yards.
After a run on 4th and 2 by junior running back Stone Colby extended Lewiston’s drive to open the half, Emerson capped the nine-play drive with a 12-yard touchdown pass to junior wide receiver Ace Curry that cut the deficit to seven once again.
The Rams would answer on their ensuing drive on a 42-yard touchdown run by Johnson to put them back up 35-21.
Lanham punched in his fourth touchdown on a 73-yard run two drives later after the Blue Devils turned the ball over on downs to make it 42-21. Bangor senior lineman Adam Allen recovered a fumble on Lewiston’s ensuing drive before Johnson ran in his second touchdown from 32 yards out.
Bangor intercepted Emerson on Lewiston’s next three possessions, one of them a 37-yard return for a TD by senior quarterback/defensive back James Deane, to seal the 55-21 victory.
“I thought Eddie Emerson threw the ball extremely well and I thought we had people open,” Lewiston head coach Bill County said. “We couldn’t just stop throwing it. When that’s the only aspect of your game that’s going you’re eventually going to throw a pick, and a couple of them were big.”
The Rams hope for a better result next Saturday than the last time they faced the Stags, a 49-7 home loss on Oct. 19.
“We couldn’t play any worse [last time],” Hackett said. “We can’t have turnovers. They’re the best team, and we just have to hang in there as long as we can and hope to get a turnover or something that makes a difference. They’re not going to beat themselves – they never have.”