FAIRFIELD – The Lawrence football team had little momentum, no lead and seemed a bit out of sync in the first half of its Eastern Class A semifinal Friday night against Messalonskee.

“We had no panic,” Lawrence Coach John Hersom said. “We talked about wanting to come out and win the third quarter.”

The Bulldogs did just that, breaking away from a 7-7 tie with a pair of touchdowns en route to a convincing 28-13 victory before a packed house at Keyes Field.

Top-seeded Lawrence (10-0), which advanced to the regional championship game for the first time since 2007, snapped a two-game playoff losing streak on its home field.

Shaun Carroll rushed for 192 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries to power the Bulldogs, who will play second-seeded Bangor (8-2) at 7 p.m. Friday night at Keyes Field.

“It was a huge win,” Carroll said. “We stepped up and handled adversity. We did it. We got it going.”

No. 4 Messalonskee (6-4) battled Lawrence tough in the first half before unraveling a bit in the third quarter.

Sam Dexter caught a 51-yard touchdown pass from Travis St. Pierre and returned a kickoff 79 yards for a score to lead the Eagles. St. Pierre threw for 128 yards, completing 7 of 13 passes.

“Lawrence is a great football team,” St. Pierre said. “We gave it our best. They wanted it more in the second half. But this is the kind of atmosphere you love. You’ll never forget this.”

Lawrence went ahead for good after it pinned Messalonskee inside its own 10 on a terrific punt by Alex Leathers.

The Eagles gained just 4 yards and were forced to punt. Lawrence took over at the Messalonskee 29, and three plays later Anthony Sementelli rushed for a 15-yard touchdown with 5:49 left in the quarter. Chad Martin kicked the extra point to make it 14-7.

Lawrence used a seven-play, 47-yard drive to pad its lead in the closing seconds of the third quarter. Leathers capped the drive with a 35-yard touchdown pass to Spencer Carey.

MT. BLUE 35, GARDINER 14: Cam Sennick caught an 11-yard pass for the go-ahead touchdown in the final minute of the first half, and the second-seeded Cougars (9-1) moved on to the Eastern Class B final with a victory over the third-ranked Tigers (7-3) at Farmington.

With the score 14-14 just before halftime, Alonzo Connor of Gardiner had a chance to intercept a pass by Mt. Blue quarterback Jordan Whitney, with nothing but open field in front of Connor. But the ball went through Connor’s hands and was caught by Sennick in the end zone.

Whitney finished with two touchdown passes, and also rushed for two scores and intercepted a pass to help the Cougars set up a showdown with top-seeded Leavitt next weekend.