Panthers win 26-12. Next up: Blair Oaks
The Panthers are heading for the district championship.
“The glue is Beau Gordon,” one observer said after Centralia’s 26-12 district semifinal win over the Southern Boone Eagles. “Whenever we need tough yards he gets them.”
It was tough game, and a tough first half for Centralia.
When it was over, Luke Hunter had rushed for 126 yards and two touchdowns and when Centralia quarterback Beau Gordon was not handing the ball to Hunter he rushed for 42 yards and one touchdown.
The game started hard for
both teams with the Eagles seeming to have a slight advantage in gaining yards, but nobody scored. The first quarter ended, 0-0.
“Good strong defenses, heavy hitting, hard-nosed,” said one observer of the first quarter. “There was some heavy hitting in the first quarter.”
The Eagles chiseled ahead in the second. They scored six at 10:38 in the second with a 33-yard Chase Schuup pass to Tate Johns.
Two minutes later Centralia repaid them with a 43-yard Luke Hunter touchdown rush.
Less than a minute later Schupp rushed 10 yards for another touchdown.
Both team had tried for two-point conversions. Neither was successful.
Then with two minutes left in the half Hunter scored again with a three-yard rush, tying the game at 12 going into the half.
Neither team scored in the third, in part due to Centralia’s Liam Hill making what turned into a game-changing red-zone interception.
“In the second half key third down conversions for Centralia’s offense and key fourth-down stops for the defense. But the third quarter was ate up totally by a long Centralia drive that led to Centralia scoring with a pass to Jackson Wells.”
Then came the fourth quarter.
Exploiting a sudden opening in the Eagles’ pass-coverage, Gordon drilled a 35-yard bazooka of a pass into Jackson Wells’ waiting hands.
He wasn’t done scoring. He then showed the estimated 400-strong crowd what a successful two-point conversion looked like by lobbing his next pass into Hunter Phillip’s hungry hands.
The Eagles battled back, but whenever they seemed to get traction, a Centralia tackler, often named Phillips, Max Hunter, Lane Mathews, Kyden Wilkerson or Sam Lynn would be there to put a stop to things.
Then with one minute left, Gordon bulldozed up the middle, through the Eagles’ line for the game’s last touchdown.
It was all over but the last 60 ticks of the clock.
Centralia’s defense held the Eagles to 254 yards, while the Panther offense took 272. Phillips and Max Hunter led the defense with seven solo tackles each. They were backed up by Lynn and Mathews, who had four each and Wilkerson who had three solos and four assists.
For the complete article see the November 11 edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.