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Running back carriers Buccaneers past LCHS
Panthers v Buccaneers, 15-0
Quarterback Henry Barrett (3) pitched the ball to Roderick Jones (14) for a short run during the third quarter of the game. Although the offense began to open up the game in the third, it was not enough to put the ball in the end zone. - photo by Phgoto by Patty Leon
It appeared at first that history would repeat itself. The skies were dark and a hard rain fell on the field at Darien’s Buccaneer Stadium the same way it did a year ago, forcing the game between the Buccaneers and the Panthers to be called.
This year, however, the skies cleared and the rain turned to a drizzle and Friday’s game continued. By the end of the game, the Panthers were most likely praying for rain.
Both head coach Kirk Warner and defensive coordinator Thomas Desbiens said in a pre-game interview, running back Jeremy Height of the McIntosh Academy Buccaneers needed to be contained or it would be a long night. It turned out to be a long night for the Panthers who were shut out of their season opener by the Buccaneers, 15-0.
It was, as they expected, all about Height who had an exemplary night. At half time the operational statistician in the press box reported the Buccaneers had 103 rushing yards to the Panthers 36. Most of the rushing yardage for the Panthers came on the strong legs and back of Byron Calahan and practically all the positive yardage for the Bucs came from Height.
The first half was defense against defense and the Panthers were able to contain the Buccaneers enough to hold them scoreless until there was 2:23 left in the half. That is when Height broke free and ran in a touchdown for the Buccaneers. The Bucs then completed a two-point conversion making it an 8-0 game.
Offensively for the Panthers, starting quarterback Henry Barrett kept calm when faced with the pressure, but for most of the game the Panthers stuck to the running play by Calahan or the pitch out to Roderick Jones. The Panthers did mount one scoring opportunity in the first half, but a dropped pass in the end zone ended that.
On two occasions, low snaps to Panther punter Edward Chipple caused the punts to be low and did not pin the Bucs deep enough in their own territory.
For the Panthers, field position was a problem all night and twice they started on their one-yard line. Penalties for both teams were minimal.
Demetrius Lane, Brandon Roberts, Artavious Frost and Calahan led the hard-hitting defense of the Panthers.
The offense for the Panthers did open up the passing game later in the second half but another dropped ball and a hard hit forced a fumble, quickly putting the ball back in the hands of the Bucs and Height.
The Bucs tried to have Height run the ball in for the touchdown and the Panthers had a good goal line stance, blocking Height’s attempt twice. Eventually Bucs quarterback Knox Robinson kept the ball and ran it in for another touchdown. The point after was good, setting the final score.
The Panthers have some time to recuperate, as they are not scheduled to play this Friday. They travel to play Brantley at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 14.
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