Coach Lucas Labbe speaks to his Massabesic football team after its 34-6 victory at Marshwood on Friday night. The Mustangs improved to 3-1 on the season. Steve Craig photo
SOUTH BERWICK — Massabesic High made an emphatic statement Friday night, using a straight-forward power running attack to beat four-time defending Class B champion Marshwood on the Hawks’ home field, 34-6, in a Class B South football game.
This season has been a dramatic turnaround in fortunes for both programs. Massabesic went 2-7 a year ago, starting with a 45-2 loss to the Hawks. Now the Mustangs are 3-1, while Marshwood is an uncharacteristic 1-3.
Massabesic is loaded with seniors, including quarterback Collin Scully and four of his five offensive linemen who paved the way for the Mustangs to rack up a Marhswood-like 332 rushing yards on 48 carries. It was Massabesic’s first win against Marshwood since 2009, when both programs were in Class A.
“We’ve been waiting. It’s been a tough couple years and it feels good to start going in the right direction,” Scully said. “We went out there and we dominated up front and that allowed me and Caleb (Waters) to get in the open field and make some plays.”
Scully rushed for three scores and 142 yards on 25 carries, using read options and designed off-tackle runs behind linemen Jackson Corey, Landon Grover, center Jared Benton, Josiah Vigue and Charlie Frechette, with help from rugged H-back Ethan Masse and tight end Allen Merrifield. Waters, a junior, showed great burst through holes, and the power and moves to break tackles en route to 153 yards on 13 carries.
“It’s definitely an attitude change from last year,” said second-year Massabesic Coach Lucas Labbe. “We want to be able to tell (teams) what we’re going to do and try to stop it. Ideally, if you block it up right, every play should be pretty successful. If we do what we do, we don’t know if there’s a lot of teams that can stop what we’re doing on the ground.”
Marshwood looked good on its opening drive, putting together a 12-play, 68-yard touchdown march despite regular starting quarterback Cullen St. Cyr sitting because he had been sick during the week. Fullback Andrew Ryan scored on a 14-yard run. St. Cyr did play the second half in relief of Mason Foote but was ineffective.
Massabesic quickly responded when Waters ripped through a hole for a 44-yard touchdown on his first carry. Preston Steeves added the extra point, and the Mustangs were ahead to stay.
“As soon as I got the touchdown, I was like we’ve got to put it on them,” Waters said.
Massabesic did that, scoring on its next two drives. Scully capped a 10-play, 51-yard march with a 3-yard run early in the second quarter. Then he threw a dart while rolling left to Steeves for a 39-yard strike and a 21-6 lead.
Scully had touchdown runs of 1 and 7 yards in the second half, after Waters ripped off big chunk plays to set them up. Marshwood, which ran the ball well at times (35 carries, 184 yards), sputtered when it tried to throw, completing 2 of 20 passes for 15 yards.
Massabesic’s next two games are against Class A teams Scarborough and Sanford.
“People are still definitely going to doubt us because I know there are people out there looking at the past. … But not this year. We have a brotherhood and it’s ain’t going away any time soon,” Waters said.
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