MAYPEARL, Texas — Friday night, the Grandview Zebras rolled into Maypearl undefeated in a battle between the top-ranked and the third-ranked team in the District.
When the smoke cleared, the Panthers (6-2, 4-1) stunned the Associated Press No. 11 UIL Class 3A Zebras with a 19-14 victory at W.G. Roesler Field, pulling an upset against one the top-ranked teams in District 6-3A.
“We truly believed we were going to win the game,” Panther Coach Tal Sanders said. “There was no doubt in our minds.”
It had been over a decade since Maypearl beat Grandview in football, but in one night it reversed 10 years of history and may have shown it can go toe-to-toe squad against the state’s best. It was also the Panthers’ first opportunity to face a state-ranked team since falling to then No. 16 Kemp High School 57-6 on Sept. 22.
While the Panthers were confident, a slow start made it seem as though they weren’t — especially after starting with three penalties on the first drive before a three-and-out forced a punt.
Awaken The Panther
The Zebras took over, but it wasn’t long before the Panthers came to life. Jagger Dixon intercepted Landon Moon inside of the five for the Panthers recovery.
Grandview would get the ball back and it wouldn’t take long for running back Earnest Crownover to find the end zone for a 28-yard score on the ground. Grandview went up 7-0.
Maypearl received the kickoff and march down the field for a 15-yard score. Quarterback Gunner Petty would bobble the snap only to recover it in time to find running back Jagger Dixon for the touchdown. The game was tied 7-7.
It wouldn’t be until the third quarter when we saw our next score. Freshman Dane Jentsch entered the game at quarterback to punch it in from the two-yard line. Grandview would go up 14-7 and it would be the last time the Panther defense allowed a score.
Zebra Lead Doesn’t Last Long
Maypearl defensive back Tariq Massey intercepted Landon Moon for the second time of the night, and ran it back for a score. The Panthers would elect for the two-point conversion but the pass would fall incomplete. Grandview would stay ahead 14-13.
The Panthers would score last on an 11-yard run by quarterback Gunner Petty. The Panthers would try a second time on a 2-point conversion and the pass would fall incomplete again.
“I’m proud to be a part of this history we made tonight and I am so proud of my teammates. It was definitely a team effort,” Panther Quarterback Gunner Petty said. “We all had our minds set on a ‘W’ against Grandview and that is exactly what we got.”
While Maypearl’s offense kept producing, their defense need not be overlooked. The Panthers held the Zebras to only 14 points, the lowest of the Zebras season. While that statistic was surpassed, the defense also forced quarterback Landon Moon to throw as many interceptions tonight as he did the entire season (3).
Although this win is one to be celebrated by Maypearl, their mission is not over. The Panthers (6-2, 4-1) will travel to Sunnyvale next week to take on the 4-3, 3-1 Raiders. Sunnyvale finished 11-0 overall and undefeated in 2016 district play, as well as reached the area round of the UIL 3A playoffs.
Grandview (7-1, 4-1) will travel to Dallas Madison next week with hopes of avenging this week’s loss.
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