Panthers Kickoff 2018 Season Versus Pottsboro
On the hot and sultry last day of August, the North Lamar Panthers hosted the Pottsboro Cardinals for the opening game of the 2018 season. After a long pregame ceremony that honored football, cheer, band and color guard seniors and their families, Friday night lights were finally upon us as the Panthers lined up to kick off after winning the toss and deferring.
NL opened the night with some trickery as Rhino Moore perfectly executed an onside kick that was recovered by Latavain Garmon on the Pottsboro 39-yard line. Kobey Emeyabbi ran three times to open the drive with gains of 5,6 and 12 yards putting NL in scoring position at the 16-yard line. A 5-yard run by Quran Anglin and a penalty gave NL a 1st and goal at the 6-yard line. The next three plays resulted in a 4th and goal from the 9-yard line. The Panthers failed to score, missing a 26-yard field goal attempt.
Pottsboro took possession at their own 20 and proceeded to put together the first of three straight scoring drives behind the arm of QB Braden Plyler and RB Will Cates. With a lead of 20-0, Pottsboro was driving again and looking to add to their lead with about 6 minutes left in the 1st half. Finally the Panther defense dug in, forcing a 4th and 19. Deciding to go for it, Plyler scrambled under pressure from the NL defense and was sacked at the 46. On the play, Plyler was shaken up and would not return to play.
The Panthers finally found the offensive groove they had seen in the first drive and moved the ball down the field. Emeyabbi put them in scoring position with a 34-yard scamper to the Pottsboro 12-yard line. Two plays later Cameron Clark scampered in for the score. Following the PAT by Favian Morales, the Panthers now trailed 20-7.
NL received the 2nd half kickoff and put together a 64-yard drive, with Emeyabbi scoring from 44-yards out on a 4th and 1 play. The PAT by Moore had the Panthers trailing by 6, 20-14.
The Panthers once again fooled everyone with another onside kick that was recovered by Ethan Allison at the Cardinal 32-yard line. NL looked to take the lead but the drive self-destructed with two penalties as the Panthers would turn the ball over on downs.
The chances for NL faded away as Pottsboro extended the lead to 27-14 in the 4th quarter, which was the final score.
Emeyabbi led the offense with 28 rushing attempts for 175 yards and a TD and was 2 of 8 passing for 24 yards. NL finished the night with 210 yards of total offense. With the loss, NL is 0-1 to start the season. The Panthers travel to Mt. Pleasant this Friday to take on the Tigers. Kickoff is at 7:30, with radio coverage starting at 7:00 on Mix 107.7.