Sunday, April 20, 2014
By Greg Reid
Special To The Telegram
KENNEBUNK — The way Kennebunk runs the ball, at first glance you might think the run is hiding a weak passing game.
Nick Emmons completed 8 of 11 passes for 146 yards and two touchdowns to lead Kennebunk to a 22-8 victory over Westbrook in a Western Class B football game Saturday.
Larson Coppinger caught four passes for 93 yards and two touchdowns for the Rams (7-0). Emmons also ran seven times for 37 yards and was intercepted once.
Nicco DeLorenzo carried the load for Kennebunk, rushing 24 times for 148 yards and a score. His 4-yard touchdown run opened the second quarter for the Rams, capping a nine-play, 65-yard drive. Jake Lary’s point-after try failed and the Rams led 6-0.
The Blue Blazes (4-3), meanwhile, saw three of their six first-half possessions end after just two plays. The first two series were scuttled by interceptions by Coppinger, then DeLorenzo.
Their third brief series of the half was more memorable; Maurice Johnson countered DeLorenzo’s score with an 85-yard touchdown run. Collin Joyce (17 carries, 65 yards) ran the conversion and Westbrook led, 8-6.
“Offensively, they hurt us with some of their counter sweeps,” Kennebunk Coach Joe Rafferty said. “They played very well defensively. It took us until after halftime to figure them out.
“(DeLorenzo) played well but they really stepped up and they pounded him.”
In the second half, with DeLorenzo earning every yard inside, Emmons found space to throw.
”(The first TD pass) was a slant to the middle,” Emmons said. “I rolled right, the safety pursued and (Coppinger) was wide open.”
“All credit goes to Nick, he had a great read,” Coppinger said. “Running the route, I didn’t even see the window. He found it, put the ball in there and I ran into it.”
Emmons’ run for the conversion helped the Rams push their lead to 14-8 with 8:47 left in the third.
Kennebunk put it away with 3:42 to play in the game, when Emmons called an audible that targeted Coppinger for a screen pass in the left flat. Coppinger caught the ball, cut across the field and bolted down the right sideline for a 15-yard score. He then ran for the conversion and the Rams led, 22-8.
“To practice (the audible) is good, to see it is good,” Rafferty said. “To execute it is great.”
The Blazes played hard throughout. Johnson ran seven times for 113 yards.
Linebacker Noah Collins was outstanding for Westbrook, with an interception, a fumble recovery and several key tackles.
“We were competitive, play in, play out,” Westbrook Coach Jeff Guerette said.
“We definitely didn’t want to give up chunks of yardage and for the most part, we didn’t. Now we’ll regroup and get ready for Oceanside.”