Freeport ball carrier Jordan Knighton, right, eludes Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale tacklers during a Class D football matchup Oct. 18 in Winthrop. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel

Things didn’t go well for the Freeport High football team when it faced Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale less than a month ago and dropped a 40-14 decision.

Now, the teams meet again with plenty more at stake, and the Falcons are looking for some measure of payback.

The two teams will meet Saturday at 1 p.m. at Maxwell Field in Winthrop in a Class D semifinal.

No. 3 Freeport (6-2) eliminated No. 6 Poland 27-7 last weekend, while No. 2 Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale (6-1) handled No. 7 Bucksport 46-27.

“We feel good about our performance last week, but we’re not satisfied,” said Freeport head coach Paul St. Pierre. “We want to keep up what we did last week; we’re going to need our best performance on Friday.”

The Ramblers ran for 344 total yards in last week’s win, coach Dave St. Hillaire said. It was their first game since Oct. 22.

“I think we’re where we want to be right now, in a good spot,” said St. Hillaire. “We had some COVID issues and we’re over those now. We got back to work into our routine and played some good football because of it on Friday.”

Here’s a closer look at the game Saturday:

Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale’s Andrew Foster, center, and teammate Dom Trott celebrate after Foster made a two-point conversion during a Class D football game against Freeport on Oct. 18 in Winthrop. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel

Freeport coach St. Pierre on Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale: “They are a great team. There’s a reason they’re the two seed. They are battle-tested and fundamentally sound technique-wise, with two great runners and a quarterback that can throw and run. The line blocks as a group and they are very stout defensively. Overall, they are very complete and provide a lot of challenges for us.”

Winthrop/Monmouth/Hall-Dale coach St. Hillaire on Freeport: “They are very well-coached and execute well on both sides while not turning the ball over. They’re a good team. We enjoyed playing against them last time and we’re expecting another battle on (Saturday).”

Keys to the game: The running game will be a major factor for both sides. Freeport will look to Tony Casale, Jordan Knighton and Nick White to pace the ground game while the Ramblers will lean on Logan Baird and Dominic Trott. The quarterbacks — Aidan Heath of Freeport and Andrew Foster of the Ramblers — can both make plays with their arms and with their legs if needed. Jake Umberhind and Cody Arsenault, two of the best linemen in Class D, will battle in the trenches on both sides of the ball.

“Last time we made too many mental mistakes on offense early on and were unable to recover,” said St. Pierre. “They got the best of us, but I think the game was closer than the score at the end. We need to put ourselves in a better position to be successful this time around.”

St. Hillaire says Winthrop’s biggest focus has been the pass defense, which has struggled in recent weeks.

“We’ve been burned a handful of times in the passing game over the past few games, but we’re hoping to clean that up,” said St. Hillaire. “Our execution has been good on offense, now we have to turn that over to the defense.”


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.