BREWER, Maine — Greely High School junior quarterback Nick Male had to overcome some adversity on Friday night in the Rangers’ Class B crossover game against Brewer at Doyle Field.
And he did just that.
Male, who didn’t play in the first quarter for disciplinary reasons after he missed Monday’s practice, threw four touchdown passes — including the go-ahead score to Nolan Anderson with 5:12 remaining — to lead Greely of Cumberland Center to a wild 34-20 Class B football victory.
Class B South Greely and Class B North Brewer are now both 2-2.
Coach Ken Perrone and Brewer’s undefeated state Class A championship football team from 1970 was honored at halftime along with the school’s Hall of Fame inductees.
Male also had to bounce back after Brewer’s Andrew Kiley return an interception 67 yards in the third quarter to give the Witches their last lead of the game at 13-12. And his next pass was picked off by Pedro Rodriguez.
Male said he just had to “clear it out (of his mind)” and keep throwing.
Moments later, he regained the lead for the Rangers with a 17-yard TD pass to Shane DeWolfe, who did a nice job going up between two defenders and snaring the ball.
Kiley’s fumble recovery off a botched snap at the Greely 4-yard line set up freshman Anthony Chiappone’s TD run with 7:54 left in the game and Kiley’s extra point tied the contest at 20-20.
But Anderson returned the short kickoff 17 yards to the Brewer 48 and a personal foul penalty on the Witches moved it to the 33.
On third-and-six from the 17, Male found Anderson on a quick pass toward the sideline and Anderson skipped into the end zone.
“There was some talking going on and I wanted to run that quick, five-yard out to Nolan because it was open,” said Male, who added that Greely tried to take advantage of Brewer’s man-to-man coverage throughout the game.
Moments later, junior linebacker Jackson Williams made an acrobatic interception, tipping the ball up in the air, locating it and hauling it in, and that set up Tim Coyle’s clinching five-yard TD run with 3:15 remaining.
Brewer was without leading rusher Bryant Kiley (sprained ankle) but Bryce Largay picked up the slack with a game-opening 65-yard touchdown run around left end in the first quarter.
However, Largay suffered a leg injury in the second quarter and didn’t return. He finished with 83 yards on nine carries.
Male answered with a 23-yard strike to Joey Casella to make it 7-6 in the second period and then he hit DeWolfe with a 33-yard pass to make it 12-7 at the half.
Male completed seven of 15 passes for 139 yards and the four scores with the two interceptions.
The hard-running Coyle gained 60 yards on 14 carries.
Will Schumacher came on to replace the injured Casella (leg) in the second half and contributed 49 yards on 10 carries.
Linebacker Coyle shone on defense for the Rangers as did lineman Colby Santana.
Brewer quarterback Cody Wood had scrambles of 13 and 11 yards and Chiappone finished with 32 yards on 12 carries.
The smaller Rangers used their quickness to get pressure on Wood, limiting him to five completions on 14 attempts for 32 yards.
Linebackers Andrew Kiley and Zach Steiger turned in strong performances for Brewer as did linemen Garrett Graham, Henry Burman and Tyler Beem.