ORONO, Maine — Junior running back Logun McMahon had a memorable first half as his Class D John Bapst Memorial High School Crusaders cruised to a 31-0 victory over Old Town at the University of Maine’s Alfond Arena on Thursday night.
McMahon carried the ball 12 times for 153 yards and three touchdowns and he also had an interception as the Crusaders built a 25-0 halftime lead. He then galloped 15 yards for his fourth TD of the game late in the third period.
McMahon concluded his evening with a career-high 182 yards on 15 carries.
“It was a great team effort,” said the 6-foot-3, 200-pound McMahon. “Great blocking by the [offensive] line. Everyone played a part.”
John Bapst improved to 2-0 and Old Town fell to 0-2.
McMahon finished off a game-opening 10-play, 57-yard drive with a 2-yard run for the first touchdown of the game.
Tristan Martin’s interception in the end zone stalled an Old Town 13-play, 60-yard drive on the Coyotes’ first series. John Bapst then went 80 yards on eight plays to extend the lead to 12-0 as McMahon rambled 61 yards on a third-and-33 play to extend the drive and followed that with a 29-yard TD run.
Junior Will Cashman came on midway through the second period after freshman quarterback Aidan Ouellette had engineered the first two touchdown drives. He led the Crusaders on a six-play, 51-yard drive that he capped with a 5-yard run on a nifty inside cut on an option play.
John Bapst marched 51 yards again for its final touchdown of the half as a 22-yard pass on a second-and-16 from Cashman to Nolan Mitchell moved the ball inside the 10. McMahon punched it in from the 2-yard line with 28 seconds remaining in the half.
The John Bapst offensive line dominated the line of scrimmage. Right tackle Nick Boyd, right guard Bailor Miller, center Zack Gaudette, left guard Marshall Sibley, left tackle Connor Simcox and end Mitchell opened some large holes for the running backs. Mitchell Mayhew also turned in some productive minutes in the offensive line.
“We took a step forward taking care of our assignments and executing when we had opportunities. That’s something we need to continue to get better at and I think we did a good job of that tonight,” said John Bapst coach Dan O’Connell.
McMahon used his size, leg drive and quickness to break a lot of tackles and carry tacklers with him as he picked up many of his yards after contact.
“He’s a good football player,” O’Connell said. “He works hard, he’s a leader. He’s also naturally gifted. It’s good when somebody that gifted wants to work as hard as he does and loves the game. We’re awful proud of him.”
Mitchell carried the ball four times for 45 yards for the Crusaders and Zane Baker had 40 on nine carries.
Old Town senior quarterback Jordan Craft completed 15 of 31 passes for 116 yards. Senior James Cote caught six passes for 63 yards and Issac Tinkle had three receptions for 17 yards.
O’Connell said the defensive standouts included McMahon at safety, Boyd at linebacker and tackles Miller and Nate Tibbitts.
Craft and Tinkle had strong defensive games for the Coyotes.
Pivotal play: Leading 6-0, John Bapst was facing a third-and-33 situation at its own 10-yard line. McMahon took a pitchout heading around right end and then cleverly cut back and found a lot of open real estate en route to a 61-yard gain.
“We were actually just trying to get off the goal line,” O’Connell said. “You’re thinking punt-ready and we’ll kick it out of here. And then a player of Logan’s caliber makes a big play like that and gets you back into a scoring opportunity.”
He then sprinted 29 yards for the touchdown and John Bapst never looked back.
Big takeaway: The Crusaders won only one game last year but look like legitimate Class D contenders with their option offense featuring a strong offensive line and the hard-running McMahon. Old Town, under first-year coach Charles Beale, is young but the Coyotes do have a nice passing attack featuring Craft and Cote.
Up next: John Bapst travels to play Poland on Friday night while Old Town visits defending state Class D champ Foxcroft Academy in Dover-Foxcroft the same night.