BANGOR – It was apparent early: This game between Bangor and Mt. Blue wouldn’t be a replay of Bangor’s regular-season rout.

Mt. Blue ran well, came up with big red-zone stops and led for much of the game. But when Bangor needed him, it went to running back Josiah Hartley, who came up big.

And because he did, the second-seeded Rams emerged with a 22-12 victory against the third-ranked Cougars in an Eastern Class A semifinal Friday night.

Hartley had 13 of his 35 carries in the fourth quarter, and carried on every play of a 10-play, 72-yard drive that culminated in a 1-yard touchdown run with just over four minutes left at Husson University.

Bangor (9-1) will be home next week in the regional final against the winner of today’s semifinal between Brunswick (6-3) and Lewiston (7-2).

“It’s on our helmets, play 48 minutes. We can’t give up. We have to play every minute of the game,” said Hartley, who ran for 90 of his 204 yards in the fourth quarter. “Our line blocked really well and we ran behind it.”

Hartley set up Bangor’s late final touchdown with an interception with a little less than three minutes left. Hartley picked off Jordan Whitney’s deep pass near the Bangor 30 and returned it to the Mt. Blue 19. Joe Seccareccia hit Nic Cota with an 8-yard touchdown pass with 33.8 seconds left.

“Five weeks ago they beat us 39-7. We feel we’re the most improved team (in the region),” Mt. Blue Coach Gary Parlin said. “We were the doormats of this league for a couple of years. I don’t think we’re the doormats anymore.”

Ahead 12-7 in the third quarter, the Cougars (7-3) stopped Bangor on fourth-and-goal from the 21. The Rams advanced to the Mt. Blue 5, but a penalty and a sack pushed them back.

Bangor was plagued by penalties through three quarters. A scoring pass to Hartley on the game’s first drive was erased by holding, and the Rams lost the ball on downs at the 27.

“I think it was a well-called game and hey, you’ve got to overcome some of that stuff if you’re going to be good,” Bangor Coach Mark Hackett said.

The Cougars came out running, but it was a 27-yard halfback pass from Cam Sennick to A.J. Larrabee that provided a 6-0 lead with 9:13 left in the half.

“We’ve had that in for three weeks. If Cony tied it (last week), we felt we could throw it against them,” Parlin said.

Added Hackett: “We knew they were going to do something, and it’s a good play. We think as long as you play other than that, they can’t do enough of those to beat you. If you worry too much about that, you stop playing.”

Bangor answered with an eight-play, 71-yard drive that ended with a 3-yard touchdown run by Hartley.