Panthers get off to early start against Cardinals
By Brian Spano PrepsKC Staff Writer
Maybe it was the time the game was played. Maybe it was the day it was played. Whatever it might be, high school football’s version of Monday Afternoon Football was anything but dull.
The Park Hill South Panthers used a ball-control offense to defeat the Raytown South Cardinals 20-14 Monday afternoon at the Park Hill District Stadium to advance to the sectional round of the Missouri Class 5 playoffs.
That ball-control offense was led by the Panthers top two running backs in Caleb Sims and Darren Davis.
“Our lineman and receivers were able to hold on to their blocks, and I was able to find a crease,” said senior running back Davis, who carried the ball 12 times on the Panthers final drive to salt away the clock and help secure the victory.
The Panthers other running back Sims, who did the bulk of his work in the first half added that whichever runner is doing well, they will carry the load.
“We both complement each other,” he said of their running styles. “He (Davis) did a heck of a job on that last drive. It was big that we were able to run the clock.”
It was a game scheduled for 4 p.m. to accommodate a rare high school football doubleheader where two schools that shared the same stadium played a home game. The Park Hill Trojans hosted Staley at 8 p.m.
This game had it all, but the most notable moment, or moments, in the game came within a 20 second span during the first quarter. Both teams combined for a total of 17 points in that 20 seconds, and it broke down like this:
The Panthers, 9-3, added another score midway through the second quarter, when Caleb Sims dove in from a yard out.
Raytown South, which ends its season at 7-4, had an opportunity to score before the half, but the Park Hill South defense thwarted several attempts from inside its own 5-yard line. The Panthers led 17-7 heading into the locker room.
The second half didn’t see as much scoring; however, both squads were doing their best to limit mistakes and gain that extra edge. The Panthers could muster only a field goal from Carlson, while Ray-South on a Marc-Alan Tucker 1-yard plunge with 10 minutes to play in the game.
After that, the Panthers defense held, and the offense did its job by holding the ball.
“Because of the way we play defense and because of our kicking game, we can play like that on offense,” Park Hill South head coach Mark Simcox said. “It’s ugly, and it’s not very entertaining, but it works for us.”
As coaches, players and administrators yelled after the game, the Panthers will live to play another day, and that opponent will be the Staley Falcons at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 13 at Staley.
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