PORTLAND – Kenny Sweet didn’t want to lose the last high school football game he would play on his home field. Neither did Dominic Lauture.
So the two did something about it. They carried Deering High to a 57-12 victory over South Portland at Memorial Field.
Sweet would score five touchdowns, Lauture three. Lauture would run for 207 yards, Sweet 206.
“We feel we’ve got two pretty talented backs,” said Jon Gallant, head coach of the Rams. “They’re special. They can make something happen any time they touch the ball.”
The victory was Deering’s third in a row after opening the season with four losses. At 3-4, the Rams are fighting for a Western Class A playoff spot. South Portland dropped to 1-6.
“We got it together,” said Lauture. “And our blockers are doing a fantastic job.”
Indeed, the offensive line of (left to right) tackle Matt Fechenda, guard Tyler Wiggin, center John Deloach, guard Bailey Lewis and tackle John Curtis opened gaping holes for Lauture and Sweet, who lines up as the quarterback in the wildcat formation.
“We gained experience, the kids worked their tails off and the offensive line took (the four losses) personally,” said Gallant. “We challenged the offensive line to step up its game. And now they’re starting to believe.”
This one got out of hand quickly.
Sweet, who also had 183 yards in kickoff returns, intercepted a pass on the game’s first play, giving Deering the ball at its 24. Three players later, Sweet took it in from 32 yards.
After a South Portland punt, Deering went 60 yards in five plays, Lauture scoring on a 26-yard run.
Deering’s Fritz Gemmer then recovered a fumble on the kickoff at South Portland’s 25.
Four plays later, Sweet scored from the 4. James Coon kicked the PAT — he was 7 for 8 — and it was 20-0 just 4:57 into the game.
“Right out of the gate,” said Steve Stinson, coach of the Riots. “Unfortunately, it’s been that kind of year. We prepare well, we work hard. But we have a hard time putting together plays in the game. We put ourselves in holes.”
Lauture intercepted a pass on South Portland’s next series, setting up his own 51-yard touchdown run that made it 27-0 with 2:12 left in the first quarter.
Trailing 34-0, South Portland, paced by the hard running of Joey DiBiase (95 yards), would score on a 3-yard run by quarterback Duncan Preston. But Sweet took the kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown.
“We just wanted to win,” said Sweet. “We weren’t going to lose the last game on our field.”
Lauture would score on a 3-yard run with 49 seconds left in the first half and it was 48-6.
Staff Writer Mike Lowe can be contacted at 791-6422 or at: