With nothing more to play for other than their ninth win and an undefeated district record, the Blanco Panthers cruised to an easy 34 to 7 victory in their regular season finale. While improving to 9 and 1 for the season, Blanco will have two weeks to prepare for their Bi-District Play-Off game, which will most likely be against Karnes City as the Panthers will be open this week.
With a steady and consistent offense, Blanco scored in every quarter, beginning with senior Layton Dworaczyk’s 12-yard run to cap off a 6-play, 68-yard drive. Cody Barnett converted on the PAT to give the Panthers a 7 to 0 first-quarter lead.
The second quarter would see Panther QB Tanner Rogers catch fire, with scoring strikes to Kyle Garrow and Dillon Luke, covering 41 and 79 yards respectively. Barnett successfully converted 1 of 2 PATs to increase Blanco’s lead to 20 to 0 at the end of the first half.
Blanco returned to the air in the third quarter, with Rogers finding TE Travis McClinton for an eight-yard TD. Barnett then split the uprights to make the score 27 to 0.
Finally, the Panthers closed out the home side on the scoreboard with a Corey Dowlearn one-yard run, followed by a Barnett PAT. Although Cole finally scored on a 41-yard fumble return, along with a successful point after kick, the Panthers ran out the clock to preserve the 34 to 7 win.
Offensively, Blanco totaled almost 400 yards on the night, led by QB Tanner Rogers, who completed 7 of 8 passes for 164 yards and three TDs. Dworaczyk followed, contributing 147 yards on the ground on just 15 carries.
Defensively, the Panthers gave up just 10 first downs and only 172 yards to the Cougars while forcing two turnovers, a Gavin Garrow interception, and a Michael Garza fumble recovery. On three different occasions, the Panther defense held strong deep in their own territory, preventing Cole from scoring.
The Panthers will now have this Friday off as they have two weeks to prepare for the play-offs. The site and time are yet to be determined for the bi-district showdown.