BUCKSPORT, Maine — Mount Desert Island responded to its only deficit of the game with three unanswered touchdowns in the third quarter and went on to defeat Bucksport 43-22 in a Hancock County football battle at Carmichael Field on Friday night.
Senior halfback Colby Lee led the way for coach Mark Shields’ Trojans, rushing for 288 yards and four touchdowns on 21 carries and also contributing a pass interception.
MDI, the reigning Class C North champion, improves its record to 2-1 and will host 3-0 Hermon at Bar Harbor next Friday night.
Bucksport falls to 1-2 and will play at 2-1 Foxcroft Academy in a key Class D North battle next Friday.
Bucksport took a 22-21 lead over MDI on the first series of the third quarter, with a 57-yard run by Lucas Wardwell on the first play from scrimmage setting up a 1-yard keeper to the end zone by quarterback Chase Carmichael just 1:32 into the second half.
Carmichael then passed to Keigan Riccard for the two-point conversion to give the Golden Bucks a 22-21 lead.
MDI required just 48 seconds to regain the lead, with Lee scoring on a 57-yard run with 9:40 left in the third and quarterback Andrew Phelps passing to Lee for the extra two points to restore the Trojans to a 29-22 cushion.
MDI’s defense forced Bucksport to punt on each of its next two possessions and cashed in both times.
The Trojans marched 71 yards on nine plays, with Phelps finding Abram Malloy wide open in the end zone for a 17-yard touchdown strike and then rushing for the two-point conversion to make it 37-22 with 4:31 left in the period.
Lee ran 31 yards for a touchdown on MDI’s next possession to boost the Trojan lead to 43-22 entering the final period.
MDI ground out three lengthy drives with its only possessions of the first half to build a 21-14 intermission lead.
Lee led the way for the Trojans with 144 yards on 12 carries, including a 57-yard run on the game’s second play from scrimmage to give MDI a 7-0 lead after James McConomy’s extra point kick just 56 seconds into the game.
Bucksport immediately countered with a 66-yard drive, with Carmichael passing to Carter Tolmansoff for a 16-yard touchdown with 7:56 left in the opening quarter to close the gap to 7-6.
MDI’s T-offense went back to work, marching 63 yards on 11 plays to extend its lead to 14-6 on Elijah Joyce’s 1-yard scoring run with still 2:38 left in the period.
MDI had the first defense that was able to make a stop, though Bucksport drove from its 40 inside the Trojans’ 25 before the drive ended with two pass completions.
That gave MDI the ball back, and the Trojans promptly drove 78 yards in 11 plays, with Lee sprinting the final 36 yards after taking a pitch to the left sideline to build a two-touchdown lead at 21-6 with 5:48 left in the half.
Bucksport was not without one more drive before intermission, with the Golden Bucks marching 68 yards in 11 plays capped off when Carmichael hit Wardwell in the left flat for a 1-yard scoring toss with 43.7 seconds to go.
Carmichael then found Riccard with a two-point conversion pass that drew Bucksport within seven points at the break.
Carmichael led Bucksport’s first-half offense with 70 yards on 10 rushes.