Intended receiver Vic Morrone lies on the turf as Jordan Siver and teammates celebrate after intercepting the final pass of the game.

PARIS — With two of the top running backs in Class A North on the sideline for Friday night’s regular-season finale between Oxford Hills and Cheverus, the quarterbacks had a chance to shine.

Vikings junior QB Colton Carson put his team up by a score early in the fourth quarter with his second touchdown pass of the game, and Stags senior signal-caller Perrin Conant put his team in position to tie or win the end.

Jordan Silver put an end to those hopes by intercepting Conant in the end zone on the game’s final play, helping the Vikings hold on for a 13-7 victory at the Gouin Athletic Complex.

“It was nerve-wracking at the end, but we’re a bend-but-don’t-break defense,” Oxford Hills coach Mark Soehren said. “I told the kids that I get a few extra gray hairs when they do that.”

Both offenses were quiet early without Cheverus’s Max Coffin (the A North leader in rushing yards) and Oxford Hills’ Dawson Stevens (No. 4 on that list). The Stags (3-5) finally broke through four plays into the second quarter on a 1-yard run by Teigan Lindstedt for a 7-0 lead.

The Vikings (4-4) took longer to get going, but Carson connected with Cam Slicer on a 59-yard touchdown pass with 56 seconds left in the first half to tie the game 7-7.

“It boosted our whole team’s confidence tremendously,” Carson said. “It’s always good to have a positive thing going into the half because then you jump on that and you carry it on to the next half.”

Cheverus got the ball to start the second half, but the momentum the Vikings gained from the late first-half touchdown transferred over to the defensive side. Oxford Hills forced four consecutive three-and-outs to start the second half.

“One thing that hurt us was we lost our tailback, and he’s our speed guy,” Cheverus coach Mike Vance said of backup-turned-starter Sean Tompkins. “He’s quick as a cat, and we lost him at halftime. So that changed the dynamic of the game a little bit.”

Tompkins ran 12 times for 55 yards in the first half. The Stags were held to 16 yards rushing in the second half.

The Vikings turned to Carson in the second half, and Carson turned to his legs, running 14 times for 100 yards after gaining just six yards on three carries in the first half.

“He’s a tough runner. We haven’t run him much,” Soehren said. “We got in the spread and ran the quarterback a little bit, and Colton’s a tough kid.”

Yet it was Carson’s arm that gave his team the lead. He threw a jump ball to Slicer in the end zone for a 22-yard touchdown pass just over four minutes into the fourth.

“I knew I was going to have to play a bigger role,” Carson said. “I knew I was going to have to carry a lot more.”

The Vikings had a chance to run the clock out, but a bad snap on a fourth-down allowed the Cheverus defense to stop Carson short of the first-down marker and gave the ball back to the Stags’ offense with 1:37 to go.

Conant, who completed just two passes in the first half, connected on six straight on the final possession to get his team within striking distance. After an incomplete pass on the penultimate play of the game, Silver got his hands on Conant’s final pass to end it.

“(Perrin) stepped up, made a lot of big plays for us,” Vance said. “We thought he did everything to win the game for us.”

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Oxford Hills Colton Carson steps over some traffic at the line of scrimmage to gain a couple yards in the first half during their game against Cheverus in Paris on Friday.Oxford Hills’ Dylan Cobbett tries to find the handle on a pass intended for him in the first half during the Vikings’ game against Cheverus in Paris on Friday.Oxford Hills’ Jeff Worster tackles Cheverus’s Sean Tompkins at the line of scrimmage during their game in Paris on Friday.Cheverus’ Griffin Watson tries getting around Oxford Hills’ Jason Paradis, who was blocked by Watson’s teammate, Akiea Oryem during their game in Paris on Friday.


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