The Blanco Panthers moved one step closer to the District 27-AA Championship after defeating the visiting Johnson City Eagles 55 to 0. The Panthers, who improved to 9 and 0 on the year and 5 and 0 in district play, will travel to San Antonio to take on the Cole Cougars in a winner take all for the district crown this Friday.
Against the visiting Eagles, Blanco scored early and often in the first two quarters of play to put the game away by halftime. QB Derek Tesch accounted for six of the Panthers’ eight touchdowns, with five of the scores coming through the air in the first and second quarters. Tesch would open the game with TD passes to Travis McClinton, Anthony Vela, and Layton Dworaczyk from 33, 7, and 9 yards respectively. The second quarter would start and end with scoring strikes to McClinton from five and twelve yards, while Vela would add a 17 yard run to the board midway through. With Dal Dechert converting all six PAT’s, the Panthers would go to the locker room with a 42 to 0 lead.
The second half saw the Panthers cross the goal line two more times. Tesch scored first on a one yard run, while Dechert would sprint 50 yards for the game’s final points. Although Blanco would miss the final conversion attempt, a score of 55 to 0 would be more than enough for the Panthers’ ninth win.
Offensively, Blanco went over 500 total yards for the third time this season, while picking up 29 first downs. The Panthers would be lead by Senior Derek Tesch, who accounted for over 200 yards in offense and 36 points on 9 of 12 passing for 163 yards and 5 TD’s in addition to adding another score and 46 yards on the ground. Through the air, Tesch connected with five different receivers, as McClinton, Vela, Dworaczyk, Dechert, and Austin Deshane would all contribute with key receptions. Layton Dworaczyk also put up some big numbers with 110 yards on the ground on just eight carries, while Hunter Elrod finished with 84 yards. Others contributing to over 350 yards on the ground were Corey Dowlearn, Dechert, and Vela.
On the defensive side of the ball, Blanco recorded their fourth shutout of the season while holding the Eagles to just 66 yards and only three first downs. Fumble recoveries by LB’s Chase Howells and Lance Gottardy, along with a Dal Dechert interception, prevented the Eagles from ever threatening to score.
Blanco will now head to Cole this coming Friday to take on the 5 and 3 Cougars, who are also undefeated in district play. This game will no doubt determine the district championship. Kick-off is set for 7:30 pm.