Portland’s offense is consistently good, but in the first quarter of Friday night’s game against rival Deering, the Bulldogs were simply perfect.

Portland ran three plays in the first quarter and each resulted in a touchdown. Turnovers and penalties prevented the Bulldogs from putting the game away by halftime, but they broke it open in the second half and won 40-0 at Fitzpatrick Stadium in the first meeting between the teams in the regular season since 2014.

“It’s always great to beat our rival,” said Portland Coach Jason McLeod, whose team improves to 2-0. “It’s been awhile. Regardless of what we still need to tighten up, it feels good.”

The Rams (0-2) went three-and-out to start the game and a miscue on the punt snap led to Portland starting its first drive at the Deering 6.

Kennedy Charles then took a direct snap and scored on a 6-yard run to break the ice, although the extra point was no good.

After the Rams went three-and-out again, the Bulldogs got a 27-yard punt return from Brandon Boyle to the Deering 18. After an offsides penalty on the Rams, Boyle scored on a 13-yard run on the first play of the ensuing drive. Cristo Vumpa’s extra point made it 13-0.

“We have a lot of weapons,” said Boyle, who transferred from Deering to Portland this year. “We have a lot of guys who can score and I love my (offensive) line.”

Portland’s unheralded defense then got the ball back on downs and Bulldogs quarterback Grant Crosby threw a beautiful bomb to a wide open Aidan DiMillo for a 56-yard touchdown pass to give Portland a 20-0 lead after the first quarter.

“We did what we were supposed to do,” McLeod. “We just executed and did our job.”

Crosby threw a pair of interceptions in the second quarter and the Bulldogs were penalized nine times for 89 yards. However, with 1:08 to go before the half, Boyle (11 carries, 149 yards) scored again, this time on an 18-yard run where he wove left, cut back and beat the pursuit to the far right of the end zone, making it 27-0 Portland at halftime.

Vumpa added a pair of third quarter field goals, the first from 37 yards out and the second from 25, stretching the lead to 33-0.

Reegan Buck added a 10-yard TD run early in the fourth.

Deering only managed 45 yards of offense, but Coach John Hardy was pleased with how his team responded after a tough first quarter.

“We definitely stepped it up in the second quarter,” Hardy said. “A lot of teams would have folded after their first three plays, but we never buckled. I’m very proud of this young team for holding our ground. We’ll put this game behind us and see (Portland) again on Thanksgiving Day.”


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