SACO – Sophomore Andrew Libby scored three touchdowns to lead heavily favored Thornton Academy to a 34-0 victory against Biddeford in their annual Battle of the Bridge football game Saturday at Hill Stadium.

Thornton (7-1), which gained the No. 2 seed in the Western Class A playoffs, will be home next Saturday against seventh-seeded Windham (4-4).

Biddeford (0-8) played hard but never threatened. The Tigers totaled five first downs.

While the game lacked the aura of past Thornton-Biddeford games, it was still important for both teams — Thornton to secure the second seed and the Tigers to try to prevent the program’s first winless season in 33 years.

“We wanted to beat them because of last year,” said Thornton quarterback Eric Christensen, referring to Biddeford’s victory a year ago. “It’s a good way to go into the playoffs.”

Although Libby scored three times, he also had three touchdowns called back because of holding penalties on the Golden Trojans, which they will have to correct before the Windham game.

“Other than the penalties I thought we played very well,” said Thornton Coach Kevin Kezal. “We played well on both sides of the ball.”

The season-long emergence of Libby as a multi-threat has made Kezal’s life easier.

“We look to get the ball in Andrew’s hands as much as possible,” said Kezal. “He’ll be getting the ball a lot more too. He’s only a sophomore.”

Libby is a running back who often takes the snap in the Wildcat offense.

He also returns kickoffs and punts and plays defensive back, rarely leaving the field.

Libby has formed a strong running combination with fullback Nick Kenney.

Kenney scored one touchdown and had 71 yards rushing on 18 carries.

Libby gained 65 yards on 14 carries.

Christensen scored Thornton’s second touchdown on a 7-yard run and completed his first six passes. He finished 10 of 13 passing for 90 yards.

Christensen and 6-foot-4 tight end Dakota Tarbox hooked up for four receptions that totaled 50 yards.

“The flat was open the whole game,” said Christensen.

A Christensen-to-Tarbox connection for 24 yards set up Thornton’s first score, a 3-yard run by Kenney.

Libby scored his first touchdown on a 1-yard run early in the second quarter.

A fumble recovery by defensive tackle Quinlan O’Brien set the Golden Trojans up for their third score, Christensen’s 7-yard run. Brandon Briggs’ third PAT made it 21-0, the halftime score.

Libby set up his second touchdown when he caught a punt at the Biddeford 34 and ran to the 4 before being stopped. He scored on the next play. Libby scored his final touchdown on a 13-yard run to open the fourth quarter.

Graduation losses, inexperience, lack of depth and physical limitations have plagued Biddeford.

“Our kids have given their best all season,” said Coach Scott Descoteaux. “They never quit. We’re not where we want to be skillwise. We have to get committed in the weight room during the offseason. We need to get bigger and stronger. We’re not used to this.”

Staff Writer Tom Chard can be contacted at 791-6419 or at:

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