The Portland High football players started to trudge toward the locker room at halftime, assuming they were staring at a three-point deficit Friday night.

But Windham had called a timeout with one-tenth of a second remaining, giving the Eagles one more shot at the end zone from the Bulldogs’ 33.

It changed the course of the game, in Portland’s favor.

Dylan Bolduc snared a high-arcing pass from Desmond Leslie at his 3, saw a convoy of blue shirts and weaved his way untouched to the end zone. It was a back-breaking play that the Portland defense made hold up with some bone-jarring tackles in a 10-3 victory at Fitzpatrick Stadium.

“I had to make a quick decision. I just saw more blockers to the left,” Bolduc said. “I did not think I was going to take it back. But then it was me and (teammate Joe Esposito) and their quarterback. I figured maybe I could get it in.”

It was a stunning turn after Portland (3-0) committed three turnovers and let Windham (2-1) control the clock throughout the first half. Kicker Robert Innis sent one field-goal attempt wide but nailed a 33-yarder to put the Eagles ahead.

But even that kick felt like a defeat for Windham. The Eagles were stuffed on third down when needing only 6 inches for a touchdown, then whistled for a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty to force the field goal.

Portland defensive back Nick Archambault made the touchdown-saving tackle on Leslie.

“We were prepping for the quarterback sneak all game. They’ve got a big quarterback. We knew they were going to try to pinch and push him through,” Archambault said. “I didn’t know at first whether he got in. I was just doing everything I could to haul him backwards.”

It was one of many big plays by Archambault, whose badly bruised thumb is preventing him from playing quarterback this season. It didn’t stop him from connecting on the key pass play of the game.

On the opening drive of the second half, Portland faced a fourth-and-6 from the Windham 36. Archambault dropped into punt formation but instead threw to Jake Hunnewell for a 14-yard gain. That led to a 41-yard field goal by John Williams that provided the final margin of victory.

“That was something new that we put in this week,” Archambault said of the fake punt. “I didn’t know if I was going to be able to make that throw. I’m just happy I could put it somewhere near Jake and he made a great catch. It’s hard to open my hand to squeeze the ball so I sort of palmed it over there. But it worked.”

The seven-point lead allowed Portland to be more aggressive on defense, and Windham had no answers.

Ethan Hoyt ended one drive with a sack. Archambault burst into the backfield to drop Leslie for a 2-yard loss on a fourth-down running play. And Archambault sealed the win with an interception with 1:31 remaining.

“I think we can play defense with anyone. I’m getting kind of used to it,” Portland Coach Jim Hartman said. “If I didn’t know they were so good, we don’t play the field position game that we did.”