SOUTH PORTLAND — The Lewiston High football team had to overcome adversity to earn its first victory of the season.

The Blue Devils rode a bus to South Portland High twice in less than 24 hours, only to squander a 16-point lead in the fourth quarter Saturday afternoon in a game that was suspended Friday night by bad weather. But thanks to quarterback Lonnie Thomas and placekicker Michael Caron, Lewiston pulled out a 19-16 victory to even its record at 1-1.

Thomas completed 8 of 11 passes for 70 yards on the final drive, and Caron provided the winning margin, kicking a 22-yard field goal with just 9.5 seconds remaining.

“It doesn’t get much more stressful than that,” said Lewiston Coach Jason Versey. “My hat is off to the Red Riots and how hard they fought, how they never gave up. It was a great competitive battle between two good football teams.”

The game started Friday night but was suspended because of lightning with 36 seconds left in the first half, with Lewiston ahead 8-0, thanks to a 2-yard touchdown run by Jeffrey Randall and a Thomas-to-Joseph Dube conversion pass.

With temperatures in the 80s when the game resumed Saturday afternoon, neither team could score in the third quarter. But the Blue Devils drove 59 yards in nearly five minutes to double their lead with 6:51 to play, as Thomas and Michael Klick connected for a 29-yard pass to the 1 before Thomas took it in for the touchdown. Randall’s 2-point conversion rush made it 16-0.


The Red Riots (1-1), though, battled back for 16 points in just over three minutes.

First, quarterback Easton Healy found Matthew Berry for a 56-yard score, then rushed for the 2-point conversion. After South Portland got the ball back on downs and with 3:22 left, Healy scored on a 7-yard run and added another conversion rush to tie it.

Lewiston quickly responded, as Thomas connected with Jayden Sands for 14 yards, hit Randall for 10 yards on third-and-10, then found Klick at the 5 to set the stage for Caron’s winning kick, on which Thomas, the holder, handled a low snap.

“I was just going out there pretending it was a regular extra point,” Caron said. “I tried to clear my mind and picture what I wanted to do.”

“In our practices, we work on these situations,” said Thomas, who completed 15 of 22 passes for 180 yards. “We did what we practiced to get down the field and score. I had 100% confidence in (Michael).”

The Red Riots’ offense was paced by Healy, who ran for 91 yards and passed for 74.

“I feel like the kids can play at the top level, and for a minute there, it was questionable, but they battled back and I’m proud of them for that,” said South Portland Coach Aaron Filieo. “Lewiston made the plays they had to. Plain and simple. Sometimes you have to give the other team credit for making plays.”

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