Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale’s Cody Perkins blocks Oak Hill’s Kyle Stilkey during Saturday afternoon’s football game in Wales. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale senior Cody Perkins shows his tribute to Farmington Fire Captain Michael Bell, who was killed in last Monday’s explosion at the LEAP Inc. building. Perkins is a member of the Winthrop Fire Department who helped cover for nearby Augusta FD while it assisted at the scene, then went to visit the site on Tuesday. Submitted photo

The back of Cody Perkins’ helmet only partially tells the story of how last Monday’s explosion in Farmington touched him, and how he did his part to help his firefighting brethren.

Perkins, a senior offensive and defensive lineman and special teams contributor for Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale, wrote “Capt. Bell” on a strip of masking tape and attached it to his helmet in memory of Capt. Michael Bell, the Farmington firefighter killed in the explosion at the LEAP Inc. building on Farmington Falls Road.

“I give my honors to Captain Bell wherever I go now,” Perkins said after the Ramblers’ 42-21 win at Oak Hill on Saturday.

Perkins joined the Winthrop Fire Department three years ago and spent two years as a junior firefighter before becoming a full member of the department after his 18th birthday in April.

He worked a 12-hour shift from Monday to Tuesday helping cover for the Augusta Fire Department as departments from around the area assisted at the scene in Farmington.

His father, Bob Perkins, is a veteran of the Lewiston Fire Department, and on Tuesday, they rode with Lewiston firefighter Troy Cailler on Augusta’s Ladder 2, driven by Augusta firefighter/paramedic Greg Feltis to the site of the catastrophe.

“I got to go and see the site,” Perkins said. “It’s pretty terrible what happened. But everybody is giving their all for Farmington. If I can go up again, I’m going to do it.”

“This whole experience has been extremely emotional,” Bob Perkins said. “Cody’s just like every other kid. When he found out I was going to Farmington that morning, he was looking for a way out of school to go. He never said it, but I’m sure of it. Once he got there and took the whole thing in and saw the empty gear lockers with the shoes in front of them, it had a gigantic effect on him.”

Those in attendance in Wales on Saturday learned of Perkins’ service via Oak Hill’s PA announcer prior to the game and gave him a rousing round of applause. Perkins, who last March was among the thousands of first responders who attended a public memorial service in Portland for another firefighter killed in the line of duty, Berwick Fire Capt. Joel Barnes, said he appreciated the recognition, but added he was just one of many firefighters “watching over a brother.”

“It’s a brotherhood,” he said. “When someone needs it, you lift them up,”

COUGARS COMPLETE ASSIGNMENT

Mt. Blue helped bring Farmington together once again during its win over Brewer on Friday night at home, but on the field, head coach Scott Franzose was satisfied with how his team put together a cohesive win.

“Tonight felt complete,” Franzose said. “I was telling them tonight that I was proud of them and to remember how this felt because we need to do this more and more. Across the board I am happy with a lot of what we did tonight.”

Franzose’s offensive line was tremendous, allowing running back Caleb Haines run for 105 yards, the most by a running back among the Cougars’ 282 rushing yard total.

“Everybody was just doing their job and it came together in the end,” Haines said.

The offensive line was impeccable, keeping quarterback Hunter Meeks clean in the pocket, while allowing him lanes if he needed to tuck it and run.

“I think it came down to us holding our blocks and staying on them good,” offensive lineman Eddie Hebert said. “Our problem has been we get out there and hold it for two seconds and then they make the tackle but when you get that big play is when you hold your blocks for eight, nine seconds.”

After the Cougars fell to Cony in week one, 35-16, Mt. Blue needed to find its stride. On Friday, Franzose believed his team did just that.

“I thought in the first game we did a lot of good things, in the Messalonskee game we executed better and more consistently,” Franzose said. “Tonight I felt we put that all together. I thought we played with a lot of heart and a lot of energy. Guys were on assignment.”

MASON ARMED AND DANGEROUS FOR TELSTAR

Davin Mason made his name known in Friday’s win at Gray-New Gloucester by rushing for four touchdowns, but what really made the quarterback — and the Rebels’ offense — dangerous was Mason’s ability to throw the ball.

Mason was 13 of 23 passing (57 percent), but just 5 of 12 (42 percent) in the first half. The Rebels found themselves trailing at halftime, 22-16, but an improved passing attack helped their second-half comeback.

“It was pretty big. We try to balance it out, but passing was big,” Telstar coach Tim O’Connor said. “We had several passes in the first half that got dropped, and, I mean, they were open. So we just didn’t make the plays.”

Mason was an efficient 8 for 11 in the second half, including completing his final five passes and seven of his last eight. Of his 182 passing yards, 141 came in the second half, with five passes going for 20 yards or more.

“Their quarterback was putting it right on them in the second half, so it made it tough,” Gray-New Gloucester coach Brian Jahna. “And then a few of the plays were just a little wacky and they end up still getting it. It hurts.”

Mason connected with four different receivers in the game — Teddy Doyle, Shane Ojeda, Brayden Stevens and Myles Lilly. Stevens was his favorite target, with seven completions to the sophomore running back.

“I have 100 percent confidence in them,” Mason said. “I’ll throw any ball to them, any day of the week. I don’t care who’s covering them, I’ll give them the ball. I know they can make plays.”


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