Wells running back Payton MacKay is brought down by Dasean Calder of Leavitt during Leavitt’s 22-8 win Saturday night in Turner. It was the first time this season that MacKay has been held to less than 100 yards rushing. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

The 33-game winning streak is over and Wells High football coach Tim Roche said he and his team don’t have the time or energy to mourn its passing.

On Saturday night, the Warriors lost a game between unbeaten teams at Leavitt, 22-8.

It was Wells’ first loss since Oct. 21, 2016, when Cape Elizabeth won a regular-season finale, 13-7. That game also pitted unbeaten teams. Wells got its revenge three weeks later, winning at Cape in the Class C South final.  The 33-game win streak, which included the 2016 Class C championship, and titles in Class D in 2017 and 2018, is believed to be the fourth-longest in Maine high school history.

This year Leavitt and Wells were pegged as state-title contenders in the preseason.

“They’re a good football program and have been for years. They were fully what we expected,” Roche said of Leavitt. “Everybody says we’ll see them again (in the playoffs) but we’ve got to get there and they’ve got to get there. I don’t even want to talk about that.”

What Roche talked to his players about Monday morning when they reconvened was that after a loss, coaches and players have to first look at what they can do better.


“The kids know it and they came in with the attitude I wanted to see,” Roche said.

Leavitt won primarily with its defense. The Hornets held Wells’ vaunted rushing game in check, keeping Payton MacKay under 100 yards for the first time this season.

“Physically they took it to us,” Roche said.

Wells averaged 40.4 points per game during its winning streak. It scored at least 25 points 31 times, a 14-7 win against Cape in 2017 and an 18-6 win in this season’s opener with Winslow the only exceptions.

Wells will face another tough defense Friday at home against Fryeburg Academy (3-3). The Raiders have won two straight and allowed just 68 points total in six games. Their losses to Leavitt, Cape Elizabeth and Freeport were by a total of 14 points.

The Warriors will finish the regular season at York (5-1).


“Fryeburg’s good. York’s good,” Roche said. “Now it’s time for us to step up to the plate and do what we need to do.”

One thing the Warriors won’t have to do is talk about a winning streak.

“I don’t want to lose but I also don’t want to talk about it. So if that’s over, the talking about it, that’s fine with me,” Roche said.

GO GADGET GO: With Friday’s game against Cheverus tied, 20-20 in the waning seconds, Biddeford offensive coaches Keith LeBlanc and Ron Cote called for the old hook-and-ladder play.

Head coach Brian Curit didn’t like the call. The Tigers had just run it two weeks before at Sanford, so Curit knew Cheverus’ coaches had seen it on film.

Curit also remembered how the 2018 season ended. Instead of settling for overtime in a playoff game at Greely, an attempted Biddeford hook-and-ladder – “That’s what we call it. Some people call it the hitch-and-pitch” – was intercepted and returned for a game-winning touchdown.


“I didn’t like the play. Let’s face it, I was worried it would get picked off,” Curit said.

On Friday the play worked perfectly. From inside the Cheverus 40, quarterback Marc Reali connected with wideout Ashton Crowell on about a 6-yard curl-in (hook), which brought the deep cornerback up. Coming from his slot receiver position, Scott Kelly worked his way up the left sideline (the ladder) and took a quick pitch in stride, then outran the out-of-position defense for the winning score with 19 seconds to play.

THERE ARE NOTABLE omissions to the Class B regular-season schedule this year, a result of the two divisions expanding to 11 teams and the need for Class B teams to supplement the eight Class A teams’ nine-game schedule.

In B North, Brunswick and Cony are both 6-0 but won’t play each other. Cony also won’t play Lawrence (5-1). Brunswick, coming off a 49-7 win last week against Falmouth/Greely, is unlikely to be tested down the stretch. The Dragons are home against Brewer (1-5), then finish at Messalonskee (0-6). Both of those teams are allowing 41 points per game.

Kennebunk at Marshwood (6 p.m. Friday) highlights this week’s schedule. Both clubs are 5-1, their only losses against top Class A teams Bonny Eagle and Thornton Academy, respectively. Last season the teams played two hard-fought defensive struggles. Kennebunk won in South Berwick 17-14 on Ryan Connors’ last-second field goal and the Hawks won the regional title in a game played at Waterhouse Field in Biddeford, 14-13.

Kennebunk enters the game with a slight lead in the Crabtree standings but Marshwood has the statistical scoring edge. In its five Class B games, Marshwood has dominated, outscoring the competition 249-10 with three shutouts. Kennebunk isn’t far behind. The Rams have outscored their five B opponents, 233-74.

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