Oxford Hills’ Alex Turner keeps his eyes on the ball while defended by Thornton Academy’s Ean Patry (52). While the play was ruled incomplete, off-setting penalties, including pass interference on Patry, resluted in replaying the down.

PARIS — Thornton Academy’s option offense was too overwhelming for Oxford Hills as the Trojans ran to a 40-0 win on Friday Night at the Gouin Complex.

“We know that when we have to get ready for an option team in two or three days it’s really hard,” Thorton head coach Kevin Kezal said. “It is something that we really try to take advantage of… It is something that we really try to stress because it stretches the defense.”

The first quarter was full of dead-end drives by both sides. Thornton’s Anthony Bracamonte ran a punt back 56 yards on the first punt of the game, but that was called back because of a hold.

Thornton ran a twelve-play, 79-yard drive to end the first quarter and punctuated it with a six-yard touchdown run by Jason Montano to start the second. Five different players touched the ball on the drive, something quarterback Will Mitchell sees as an advantage in their running scheme.

“I think it’s great because you always like to have a lot of options,” Mitchell said. “If we can block, and if we can run the ball, then we can pass the ball. If one part of our offense is doing well then it opens up the other part of our offense.”

After the Vikings went three-and-out, the Trojans orchestrated a nine-play drive to the three-yard line, but were stopped on fourth down.

“I thought the defense did well in the first half,” Oxford Hills head coach Mark Soehren said. “We had a couple of bend but don’t break pays, but offensively we just could not get things going.”

Oxford Hills ran its best drive of the game in the ensuing possession, but Thornton’s defense came up big on the last play of the half. Vikings quarterback Colton Carson threw to the left side but was picked off by Cameron Jones who ran the interception back 55 yards for the touchdown.

“The pick-six at the end it was tough,” Soehren said. “And then in the second half, they just outplayed us.”

After 84 rushing yards in the first half, Mitchell was able to use both the run and the pass to his advantage.

“It’s great to be able to rely on guys to run the ball,” Mitchell said. “ We have our reads we run them every day in practice so it kind of come second nature.”

Thornton received the kick to start the second half and returned it 42 yards to almost midfield. Grant Dow broke off a 34-yard run to set up running back Julien Bailey-Cottle’s 14-yard touchdown run just 70 seconds into the half.

Dawson Stevens, the top runner in Class A North heading into Friday, went down early in the third with an ankle injury and was unable to return, joining previously injured back Emerson Brown on the Oxford Hills sideline.

The Trojans scored on their first play of their ensuing drive as Mitchell threw over the top to C.J. LaBreck for a 27-yard score. Mitchell ended the next drive with a 44-yard touchdown throw to Bracamonte, splitting two defenders.

After a tough loss to Bonny Eagle last week, Mitchell was excited about his team’s effort, Friday.

“It’s a great win,” Mitchell said. “Coach said we could go either one of two ways, we could either come out with no energy or we could come out with a lot of energy.

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