STANDISH — Fittingly, this game ended with a defensive stand.

As Scarborough High quarterback Chase Cleary tried to scramble after bobbling a shotgun snap on fourth down in overtime, he was swarmed by Bonny Eagle’s defense and stopped at the 5, ending the Class A semifinal Friday night and sending the Scots to their first state championship game since 2016 with a 14-7 win.

“We just pushed through. We’re a bunch of seniors. Everyone’s ready for the moment,” said Nate Ferris, who led the charge on the final play with ample help from linebacker Cam Gardner and safety Alex Dyer.

“That was absolutely amazing. I’ve only felt that emotion one time before, and that was last year for basketball,” Gardner said, referencing the Scots’ run to the Class AA final, where it lost to Bangor. “Now we’re going back for football, and we’ll get it done this time.”

Regulation time ended in a 7-7 tie. Bonny Eagle, the No. 2 seed, had the first offensive possession of overtime. Each team gets the ball at the 10, with four downs to score.

Zach Maturo (19 carries, 114 yards) put the Scots ahead, going outside with a direct snap to score from the 2 on third down. He had also carried on first and second down.

“We’re going to put the ball in the hands of our best player and let him try to get into the end zone,” said Bonny Eagle Coach Kevin Cooper.

On Scarborough’s possession, Jarett Flaker was stopped for a yard on first down. On second and third down, passes by Cleary were low, and his receivers could not come up with difficult but catchable throws.

Bonny Eagle (10-1) advances to the state championship game next Saturday at Fitzpatrick Stadium in Portland against the winner of today’s Oxford Hills at Thornton Academy semifinal.

Third-seeded Scarborough finishes 8-3, twice losing at Bonny Eagle and once in overtime against No. 1 Thornton.

“I’m so proud of my kids, all the work they’ve put in,” said Scarborough Coach Lance Johnson. “We had our chances tonight. They played hard. Bonny Eagle played hard. Hard-fought game.”

In both losses in Standish, Scarborough scored on its first possession and then was shut out the rest of the way.

“Our defense was fantastic,” Cooper said. “To be able to hold a team that has Jarett Flaker and Chase Cleary and as good as Scarborough is, to be able to hold them to a touchdown for the second time this year, I’m really proud of our defense.

“For the amount of offensive talent on the field on both sides, to be in a 7-7 game, pretty incredible defenses on both sides.”

In Bonny Eagle’s 18-7 win in the regular season, a key sub plot was that Flaker had only five touches from scrimmage – just one in the second half.

On the Red Storm’s first drive, Flaker (13 carries, 66 yards) ran five straight times for 48 yards and then caught a touchdown pass from Cleary for a quick 7-0 lead.

But from that point, Scarborough’s offense short-circuited, with limited positive gains and a costly fumble by Cleary after a short punt had set Scarborough up at the Scots’ 35 for its second possession.

It was much the same for Bonny Eagle, which had three first-half drives stopped inside the Red Storm 25.

Nate Ferris (14 carries, 73 yards) tied the game with a 27-yard burst off tackle right midway through the second quarter.

Both teams had second-half possessions stall deep inside the red zone.


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