RUMFORD – Kyle Duguay, a standout running back for Mountain Valley High, went down with a neck injury in the first quarter and didn’t return.

A lot of teams would have let something like that bother them. But not the Falcons. They went about their business.

“I think they actually played better after that. It motivated them,” Cape Elizabeth Coach Aaron Filieo said of the injury.

“I think other teams would have been affected by the loss of a top player, but not those guys,” said Filieo, looking across the field.

Halfback Izaak Mills picked up the slack in Duguay’s absence, as did the rest of the team, and the Falcons blanked Cape Elizabeth 13-0 in a Western Class B football semifinal Friday night at Chet Bulger Field.

The defending state champion Falcons (9-1) advanced to the regional final at Wells (10-0) next weekend.

“We don’t depend on any one player,” said Mills, who gained over 100 yards. “We’re a team. We’re certainly not one dimensional. We keep going hard no matter what.”

After the game, Mountain Valley Coach Jim Aylward told the team that Duguay’s X-rays were negative and that he’s fine.

“The other good news is that next (week) we’re getting on a bus and going to the promised land — Wells,” he said.

Along with his hard running, Mills made the defensive play that resulted in the first touchdown. With Cape (7-3) in punt formation deep in its own territory, Mills ran in untouched from the right side and blocked Austin Petsinger’s punt. The ball popped into the arms of Taylor Carey, who crossed the goal line for the score.

“I timed it perfectly,” said Mills. “Taylor stole my touchdown.”

Early in the second quarter, the Falcons started a drive on their 15. Mountain Valley stuck mostly to the ground, but did complete two passes, the last for a 4-yard touchdown from quarterback Zach Radcliffe to Jacob Theriault.

Mills carried the ball nine times on the drive, while fullback Matt Hosie had five carries. The touchdown came with 1:19 left in the first half.

The Capers crossed midfield only once in the first half. They opened the second half with their best drive, going from their 30 to Mountain Valley 5 on hard running by Andrew Lavallee, their 300-pound fullback, and Derek Roberts.

On second down at the 8, Connor Maguire threw behind end Bill Brooks at the goal line. Lavallee carried the ball to the 5 on the next play.

Cape was penalized for illegal motion on fourth down, which moved the ball back to the 10. Mountain Valley defensive back Isaac Roberts intercepted the fourth-down pass at the goal line and returned it across midfield to the 48.

“They were driving it down our throats,” said Mills.

At the start of the fourth quarter, Cape had one last chance to cut into the Falcons’ lead. Maguire threw his best pass of the game, hitting Brooks for a 24-yard gain across midfield. Cape reached the Mountain Valley 35, but a good gain by Roberts was wiped out by a holding penalty. A final incomplete pass gave the ball to Falcons.

“We didn’t execute and Mountain Valley did,” said Filieo. “We made too many mistakes, more than Mountain Valley. In games like these, you can’t do that.”

Lavallee was the workhorse for the Capers. The Falcons needed a strong defensive effort to slow him down just enough.

Staff Writer Tom Chard can be contacted at 791-6419 or at: [email protected]

Twitter: TomChardPPH