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Falcons break into win column, 24-13
RUMFORD — When your back is up against the wall, there's no place like your own turf to turn things around -- especially in a football game.
Mountain Valley rebounded and began executing its game plan going into a Class B Campbell Conference tilt Friday night.
Matt Hosie returned with avengeance, rushing for 169 yards and scoring three touchdowns. The Falcons' defense came up big on several occasions in a come-from-behind 24-13 win over Spruce Mountain at Chet Bulger Field.
Mountain Valley was forced to play an all-around game because Spruce Mountain refused to go away. A fumble recovery by Aaron Benson and goal-line stands at the end of the first and on the Phoenix final drive of the game provided the Falcons with their first win this season. .
MV shut out Spruce Mountain twice last year by a combined score of 92-0. It was the first time the Falcons gained a lead this season, and they needed a 12-yard reception by Jake Therault on fourth down to keep the drive alive .
“I think coming into the game 0-2 actually helped us,” said Hosie, who served a two-game suspension for violating team rules. “I know I've never been in this situation and being 0-2 made us realize that nothing is going to be given to us."
Mountain Valley (1-2) received a golden opportunity when Ryan Stickney tackled the Pheonix punter at the Phoenix 28. On second down, Hosie ran 26 yards for a touchdown. Brett Beauchesne rushed the conversion for a 16-7 lead.
"It's nice for the kids,'' said Mountain Valley coach Jim Alyward. “They get to look at the scoreboard and see the results of hard work."
Spruce Mountain took the lead when quarterback Peter Theriault (175 yards, 20 carries) broke through the line and sprinted 93 yards up the right sideline for a touchdown. Brandon Stevens kicked the PAT with 3:46 left in the first quarter.
The Phoenix defense forced several turnovers. Matt Vigue intercepted quarterback Ryan Nicols' throw and James Ouellette recovered two fumbles in the third quarter.
The latter recovery set up a Alwayne Uter TD run through arm tackles. Spruce Mountain trailed 16-13. Mountain Valley regained its composure and the offensive line blocked for Hosie's four-yard TD. Ryan Nicols passed to Caleb Gauvin for the two-point conversion.
"We had a good week of practice, '' said Nicols, who broke up two passes in fourth quarter. "But we made some mistakes in the game and we know that we can't take anything for granted. We need to continue to work hard."