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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Panthers use big second half to clinch District 2-6A title - Odessa American: Oavarsity

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Panthers use big second half to clinch District 2-6A title

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Posted: Friday, November 20, 2020 11:30 pm

SAN ANGELO The Panthers shrugged off a sloppy start Friday to clinch a share of the District 2-6A title with a 58-38 win over the San Angelo Central Bobcats at San Angelo Stadium.

The Panthers (7-2 overall, 5-1 in district) scored 17 points in the second quarter and took control in the second half as the Bobcats fell to 4-4, 4-1.

Shy Stephens-Deary caught three touchdown passes, tying Roy Williams’ single-season record of 17. Harper Terry threw two of those passes and rushed for th reemore scores, and Andy Castillo ran for a pair of TDs to fuel the offensive explosion.

“I’m extremely proud of how our guys played throughout the game,” Permian coach Jeff Ellison said. “We got down in the first half and man, everything that we’ve learned throughout this season and staying together and fighting back, we really had that momentum going forward. I’m very excited for our guys.”

It wasn’t until late in the first quarter when San Angelo Central found the end zone on a pass from quarterback Malachi Brown to Jalen Leifeste for a 13-yard touchdown pass. Ethan Aguilar’s extra point made it 7-0 with 34 seconds left.

The Bobcats added to their advantage with a 39-yard field goal by Aguilar to make it 10-0 with 10:12 left in the second quarter.

The Panthers responded with a five-play, 70-yard scoring drive that resulted in a 19-yard touchdown pass from Terry to Stephens-Deary. The extra point was no good, leaving the Panthers at a 10-6 deficit with 8:29 remaining in the half.

The Bobcats scored on a Leifeste 49-yard touchdown reception as the hosts extended their lead to 17-6 at the 6:48 mark.

The Panthers managed to work the ball down the field and Tate Terry kicked a 23-yard field goal to narrow Permian’s deficit.

Permian recovered the ensuing kickoff and used a little trickery with Rodney Hall hooking up to Stephens-Deary for a 32-yard touchdown pass. Terry’s run on the two-point conversion tied the game at 17-17 at the half.

The Panthers took advantage on their first drive of the second half when Terry scored on a 2-yard run to help give Permian its first lead of the night at 24-17.

Stephens-Deary hauled in a 6-yard touchdown pass from Terry on the Panthers’ next drive as Permian extended its lead with 1:55 left.

Castillo’s 5-yard touchdown run with 7:07 left in the game gave the Panthers a 45-24 lead to help ice the game.

“It means a lot for us,” Terry said. “We’ve faced a lot of adversity over the year and just being able to do this just shows how we’ve been able to come together as a team.”

>> Follow Michael Bauer on Twitter at @OAmichaelba

Odessa, TX

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