The Winslow offense readies for a play against Medomak Valley in a Class C North semifinal Saturday in Bath. Dave Dyer/Kennebec Journal

BATH — For three quarters, it looked like the Winslow football team appeared poised to pull off the upset of the season in Class C North.

But then Hayden Staples and top-seeded Medomak made sure that wouldn’t happen.

With his team clinging to a 14-13 lead at the start of the fourth quarter, Staples dashed for a 50-yard touchdown, sealing Medomak Valley’s 21-13 win Saturday at McMann Field. The Panthers (8-2) will play No. 2 Hermon (7-3) for the regional title next Saturday at Hampden Academy.

“It feels pretty good,” said Staples, a senior. “We’ve just got a big group of seniors that are ready to fight … We’re not ready to back down. We don’t want (the season) to be over.”

No. 5 Winslow finished 4-6.

Medomak leaned heavily on Staples, who ran for 173 yards on 25 carries, scoring two touchdowns. On his 50-yard score, Staples tried to go up the middle, then made a spin move and found daylight down the sideline.


“I got wrapped up top and spun out of it,” Staples said. “I was just able to bring it to the house.”

Of Staples’ 173 yards, 134 came in the second half, despite the unseasonably warm weather.

Winslow quarterback Jared Newgard looks for an open receiver against Medomak Valley during a Class C North football semifinal Saturday in Bath. Dave Dyer/Kennebec Journal

“We just needed to keep coming at them and not let up,” Staples said. “Keep pounding that ball (with the run game).”

Winslow combated the Panthers with a heavy dose of running back Matt Quirion, who recently returned from an arm injury suffered at the beginning of the season. Quirion finished with 73 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries.

“I’m super proud, super proud,” Winslow Coach Wes Littlefield said. “We talked about all week how we’re a lot better team than we were at the beginning of the year … I thought we came out and played a great game. Boy, I thought we were just right there, but we just didn’t make some plays, that’s all.”

The Black Raiders also had success in the passing game. Quarterback Jared Newgard completed 10 of 12 passes for 81 yards. Pedro Garcia had a 1-yard touchdown run in the third quarter for Winslow.

It was the second time this season the Panthers beat the Black Raiders. Medomak won 40-0 on Sept. 10 in Waldoboro, though Winslow was without five starters because of injuries. Littlefield said he was proud of how his team fought through adversity all season.

“I remember it being 90 degrees (earlier in the season) at Medomak Valley,” he said. “I looked at our team, we were missing five starters (with injuries), and to go out there (and play), we had adversity right away, with freshmen going in for seniors. It didn’t go away (throughout the season). But as we went through the year without (Quirion), we learned a lot about ourselves. The kids really stepped up and played hard.”

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