After a torrid display of offense in the first half by both teams, the Dragons (6-1) took control in the second half, holding the Cougars (5-2) to just 70 total yards.

Trailing 20-16 and in their only possession of the third quarter, the Cougar offense drove to the Dragons’ 3, where Brunswick’s front three of Josh Goddard, Patrick Green and Logan Ouellette stood tall, preventing Mt. Blue from crashing into the end zone for the go-ahead touchdown.

“The defense certainly picked up their game in the second half,” Brunswick coach Dan Cooper said. “We needed to make plays on offense but we came up with a great goal line stand.”

Talented running back Will Bessey continued to pace Brunswick’s offense as he has done all season, carrying the ball 34 times for 198 yards and one touchdown. The Dragons rushed the ball 51 times for 263 yards.

“Will was feeling good and running hard,” Cooper said. “He was a warrior, tonight.”

It appeared Brunswick would run away with the game in the first quarter when the Dragons scored two touchdowns in the final three minutes and 22 seconds.

Quarterback Thomas Hanson (2-for-5) finished off an 11-play, 65-yard drive hitting receiver Jackson Gordon in the left corner for the touchdown from 11 yards. Alex Larson added the kick for a 7-0 lead with 3:22 left in the first quarter. Mt. Blue was penalized three times for 25 yards on the drive.

Two plays later, the Dragons were back on the attack after defensive back Ben Palizay (two interceptions) intercepted Cougar quarterback Ryan Pratt’s pass, returning the ball to the 5-yard line where Bessey bulldozed the ball through the middle for a 13-0 advantage at 2:30.

“Brunswick is a really good team, but when you spot them 13 points in the first quarter, it becomes an uphill battle,” Mt. Blue coach Jim Aylward said. “We played well after we took that first punch to the face, but they were just more physical than us.”

Spirited by a sensational 43-yard run by Nathan Pratt-Holt on Mt. Blue’s first possession of the second quarter, the Cougars came to life. Quarterback Ryan Pratt scored on a one yard keeper and Alex Gilbert added the two-point rushing conversion to cut the Brunswick lead to 13-8.

Brunswick responded with a nine-play drive that featured Bessey carrying the ball six times for 49 yards. Jesse Devereaux rolled into the end zone from the three for a 20-8 lead with 4:25 left in the half.

Quinn Guistra stunned Brunswick when the returned the kick-off, following Hanson’s touchdown, 65 yards for the touchdown. Zach Meader added the two-point rushing conversion to narrow the Dragons’ advantage to 20-16.

Hanson laid the game to rest in the fourth quarter scoring on a three yard run with 4:40 left in the game.

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