Injuries kept Justin Bryant on the sidelines for most of the previous two Class B football state championship games.

On Saturday night, he made up for lost time.

Marshwood’s senior fullback ran for 218 yards and five touchdowns as the Hawks rolled to a 48-28 victory over Brunswick at Fitzpatrick Stadium.

“It was great,” Bryant said. “I love playing on a big field, under the bright lights. Everyone’s here to watch. The team played really hard and finished strong.”

The title is the third in a row and fifth in six years for Marshwood. Both teams finished 11-1.

Saturday’s game was a rematch of the 2018 final, a 49-0 Marshwood victory. This one was more competitive, but the Hawks had little trouble moving the ball and punted only twice, both after halftime.


“We had a lot of things going for us on offense,” said Marshwood Coach Alex Rotsko, who earned his fifth state championship in eight seasons at Marshwood.

“I thought we executed pretty well. The only disappointment was that we had a lot of penalties. Other than that, it was a good effort.”

Marshwood scored on all four possessions in the first half and never trailed. Connor Caverly completed eight of 13 passes for 127 yards and one touchdown – 3 yards to John Valentine.

Caverly also scored on a sneak from the 1 to give the Hawks some breathing room ]in the third quarter, extending their lead to 35-20. Brunswick had recovered an onside kick to open the second half and quickly pulled within 28-20 after the second of Owen Richardson’s three rushing touchdowns.

“He’s the best back we’ve played against this year,” Rotsko said of Richardson, who finished with 117 yards on 23 carries. “And they’ve got some nice complementary guys to go with him. They were good. They played hard. They always play hard.”

Brunswick also scored on a 60-yard punt fake by Chandler Coombs, who skirted left end and cut back against the grain late in the second quarter to help the Dragons stay close at 20-14.


“We got back in the game,” Brunswick Coach Dan Cooper said. “That’s what we wanted to do, but they made plays to separate again. At least we had a chance.”

Marshwood’s only loss this season was in September against Class A finalist Thornton Academy, 28-27. Until Saturday, no other opponent had managed more than two touchdowns against the Hawks.

Bryant’s five touchdown runs all covered more than 10 yards. He ran in twice from 11 yards, once from 24 and once from 27 – all in the first half. He added a 17-yard scoring run in the fourth quarter. He also ran in a 2-point conversion, meaning he was responsible for 32 of his team’s 48 points.

“Justin is so effective because A, he never stops moving his feet and B, he’s a workhorse,” Valentine said. “He’s in the weight room an hour a day, every day. We wanted it for him.”

Brunswick quarterback Noah Goddard completed three of his first four passes in the first quarter, but only two more the rest of the game. Marshwood’s Valentine and Ethan Rockafellow each had an interception, as Goddard finished 5 of 16 for 89 yards and was sacked twice.

With Bryant (18 carries) running hard between the tackles and sophomore Cameron Cornett (78 yards on eight carries) finding success on sweeps, the Hawks proved difficult to stop.

“The kids battled hard, but that’s a very talented football team over there,” Brunswick’s Cooper said of Marshwood. “They’re big, fast and physical.

“We thought we’d be able to have some success on defense, and it just wasn’t to be. They were just that much better than us.”

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