Liam Rodrigue of Oak Hill High School hauls in a 35-yard touchdown pass over Keegan Davis of Mountain Valley High School during the second quarter in Rumford on Friday. Rodrigue’s catch put the Raiders up 6-0. (Daryn Slover/Sun Journal)

RUMFORD — Once Oak Hill’s offense got going late in the first half it seemed like the Raiders couldn’t be stopped.

And even when they were stopped, the leg of Liam Rodrigue was there to lift the Raiders to a 17-14 Class D South football victory on the road at Chet Bulger Field on Friday night.

Rodrigue’s 25-yard field goal with 5:20 remaining was the difference in the final score.

“We practice that with pressure during the week — and we were talking about it. There’s no doubt we were kicking it if we didn’t get (a touchdown),” Oak Hill coach Stacen Doucette said.

The Falcons (1-2) moved the ball better in the first half, but were done in by two offensive pass interference penalties on would-be touchdown passes from Dylan Desroches to Keegan Davis and four fumbles, one of which the Raiders (2-1) recovered.

“It’s momentum taken away, for sure,” Falcons coach Pat Mooney said of the penalties. “But we need to be resilient. We can’t let bad things that we can’t control stop us from finishing a football game. I won’t use that as an excuse and my players won’t use that as an excuse either.”

Oak Hill went into halftime with a 7-0 lead thanks to a 35-yard touchdown pass from Gavin Rawstron to Rodrigue, who followed with the extra point. The pass put the Raiders at an even 100 yards of offense in the first half, while the Falcons tallied 136 yards themselves.

“I thought they won the line-of-scrimmage in the first half. We talked about it at halftime. We talked about we had to be resilient, we had to be a little more physical, and I thought we did a good job in the second half, winning the line-of-scrimmage,” Doucette said.

Mountain Valley got to within 7-6 on its second play of the third quarter, when Jacob Blanchard ran 81 yards for a touchdown. The Falcons’ second try at an extra point after Raiders were flagged for running into the kicker was blocked.

Oak Hill answered with a Quentin Pelkey 6-yard touchdown run and a Rodrigue extra point late in the third quarter, but Mountain Valley tied the game 14-14 with just under nine minutes to play on an Andrew McDonald 17-yard run on fourth down and a Blanchard two-point run.

“I think our option opened up really well. We had some nice runs, especially outside,” Mooney said.

The Falcons failed to gain a first down after Rodrigue’s go-ahead field goal, getting just three yards on a pair of runs, followed by consecutive false starts and an incomplete pass on third-and-17 before punting the ball away with three minutes to play.

“We’re a fish out of water. We’re a run-heavy team. You know, we’ve run single-wing, we’re an option-based team, and whenever we need to (pass) we can do it, we’re just, that’s not our bread and butter,” Mooney said. “So it definitely puts us in an uncomfortable situation.”

The Raiders were able to run the clock out thanks to a pair of first downs gained.

Jason Leonard, left, and Parker Salatino of Mountain Valley High School wrap up Caden Thompson of Oak Hill during the first half in Rumford on Friday. (Daryn Slover/Sun Journal)

Oak Hill High School quarterback, Gavin Rawstron, throws a short pass to Ethan Barnett while being pressured by William Bean of Mountain Valley during the first half in Rumford on Friday. (Daryn Slover/Sun Journal)

Draven Finnegan of Mountain Valley High School sacks Oak Hill quarterback, Gavin Rawstron, during the first half in Rumford on Friday. (Daryn Slover/Sun Journal)

Caden Thompson of Oak Hill High School turns up field during Friday night’s game against Mountain Valley. (Daryn Slover/Sun Journal)

Parker Salatino of Mountain Valley gets a grasp on Oak Hill’s Gavin Rawstron’s jersey during the first half in Rumford on Friday. (Daryn Slover/Sun Journal)

Keegan Davis of Mountain Valley High School hauls in a pass during the first half of Friday’s game against Oak Hill. (Daryn Slover/Sun Journal)

Mountain Valley quarterback Dylan Desroches finds room to run during Friday’s game against Oak Hill. (Daryn Slover/Sun Journal)


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