Waco Midway Defeats Temple In Battle Of Top Central Texas Teams

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Photo via Garrett Ross, TexasHSFootball.com

In​ ​one​ ​of​ ​the​ ​most​ ​highly​ ​anticipated​ ​games​ ​in​ ​Central​ ​Texas and the state, the Waco ​Midway​ ​Panthers​ ​made​ ​the​ ​trip​ ​south​ ​on​ ​I-35​ ​to​ ​face​ ​the​ ​Class 5A state finalists Temple​ ​Wildcats.​ ​Bob McQueen​ ​Field​ ​was​ ​electric​ ​and​ ​the​ ​stands​ ​were​ ​rocking,​ ​with​ ​a​ ​sea​ ​of​ ​red,​ ​white,​ ​and​ ​blue​ ​on both​ ​sides. In the end, it was the Panthers who pulled out a 40-28 win out of Wildcat Stadium.

Midway​ ​won​ ​the​ ​toss​ ​and​ ​deferred​ ​to​ ​the​ ​second​ ​half.​ ​Temple​ ​put​ ​together​ ​an​ ​impressive opening​ ​drive,​ ​the​ ​Wildcats​ ​RB​ ​Zion​ ​Leach​ ​got​ ​the​ ​drive​ ​going​ ​with ​runs​ ​of​ ​12​ ​and​ ​two ​yards.​ ​QB TJ​ ​Rumfield​ ​hit​ ​WR​ ​Xavier​ ​Johnson​ ​on​ ​a​ ​33​-​yard​ ​pass​ ​for​ ​the​ ​game’s​ ​first​ ​touchdown.​ ​Midway only​ ​need​ ​a​ ​little​ ​over​ ​three ​minutes​ ​to​ ​answer​ ​the​ ​Temple​ ​touchdown.​

​The​ ​Panthers​ ​offensive​ ​star quarterback ​Tanner​ ​Mordecai​ ​hit​ ​WR​ ​D’Ante​ ​Thomas​ ​for​ ​33​ ​yards,​ ​but​ ​the​ ​Panthers​ ​needed​ ​to​ ​convert on​ ​4th​ ​down​ ​to​ ​keep​ ​the​ ​drive​ ​alive.​ ​The​ ​Panthers​ ​were​ ​able​ ​to​ ​setup​ ​a​ ​two​ ​yard​ ​touchdown​ ​run​ ​by RB​ ​James​ ​Fullbright,​ ​with​ ​6:20​ ​on​ ​the​ ​clock.​ ​The​ ​defensive​ ​side​ ​of​ ​the​ ​ball​ ​came​ ​alive​ ​and​ ​both offenses​ ​were​ ​held​ ​in​ ​check​ ​for​ ​a​ ​most​ ​of​ ​the​ ​remaining​ ​first ​quarter.​ ​Midway​ ​was​ ​able​ ​to​ ​get​ ​into the​ ​end​ ​zone​ ​once​ ​again​ ​on​ ​a​ ​QB​ ​keeper​ ​by​ ​Mordecai​ ​with​ ​1:13​ ​left​ ​in​ ​the​ ​first​ ​bringing​ ​the score​ ​to​ ​14-7​ ​Midway.

Temple​ ​QB​ ​TJ​ ​Rumfield​ ​fumbled​ ​on​ ​in​ ​the​ ​red​ ​zone​ ​on​ ​Temple’s​ ​first​ ​possession​ ​of​ ​the​ ​2nd quarter​ ​and​ ​it​ ​was​ ​recovered​ ​by​ ​Midway​ ​LB​ ​Tacoda​ ​Goodall​ ​at​ ​the​ ​28​ ​yard​ ​line.​ ​Midway​ ​was held​ ​to​ ​three ​and​ ​out​ ​on​ ​the​ ​following​ ​possession​ ​by​ ​the​ ​stout​ ​Wildcats​ ​defense.​ ​After​ ​a​ ​failed Temple​ ​possession,​ ​Midway​ ​QB​ ​Mordecai​ ​was​ ​picked​ ​off​ ​by​ ​Temple​ ​DB​ ​Markel​ ​Reed,​ ​who​ ​took it​ ​76​ ​yards​ ​for​ ​a​ ​touchdown​ ​making​ ​the​ ​score​ ​14-14.​ ​Midway​ ​RB​ ​James​ ​Fullbright​ ​had​ ​a​ ​solid second​ ​quarter​ ​rushing​ ​the​ ​ball,​ ​before​ ​leaving​ ​the​ ​game​ ​with​ ​an​ ​injury.​ ​Mordecai​ ​was​ ​picked​ ​off once​ ​more​ ​by​ ​Temple​ ​DB​ ​BJ​ ​Sculark,​ ​who​ ​went​ ​out​ ​of​ ​bounds​ ​at​ ​the​ ​26​ ​yard​ ​line,​ ​the​ ​teams entered​ ​the​ ​half​ ​tied​ ​at 14.

The​ ​third​ ​quarter​ ​was​ ​the​ ​Marcus​ ​Johnson​ ​show​ ​for​ ​the​ ​Midway​ ​Panthers,​ ​the​ ​LB​ ​came​ ​in​ ​at​ ​the running​ ​back​ ​position​ ​in​ ​place​ ​of​ ​injured​ ​Fullbright​ ​and​ ​made​ ​a​ ​statement.​ ​Johnson​ ​found​ ​the end​ ​zone​ ​on​ ​a​ ​16​ ​yard​ ​run​ ​and​ ​after​ ​a​ ​missed​ ​PAT​ ​Midway​ ​took​ ​the​ ​lead​ ​20-14.​ ​The​ ​Panthers defense​ ​forced​ ​an​ ​interception​ ​by​ ​Temple​ ​QB​ ​TJ​ ​Rumfield,​ ​as​ ​DB​ ​Grant​ ​Parnell​ ​picked​ ​it​ ​off​ ​at the​ ​23​ ​yard​ ​line.​ ​Tanner​ ​Mordecai​ ​hit​ ​WR​ ​Demarcus​ ​Degrate​ ​for​ ​a​ ​77​ ​yard​ ​touchdown, increasing​ ​their​ ​lead​ ​to​ ​27-14.​ ​Temple​ ​was​ ​able​ ​to​ ​score​ ​once​ ​more​ ​and​ ​close​ ​the​ ​gap​ ​27-21​ ​at the​ ​end​ ​of​ ​the​ ​3rd​ ​quarter.

Midway​ ​drove​ ​the​ ​ball​ ​down​ ​the​ ​field​ ​after​ ​a​ ​defensive​ ​struggle​ ​to​ ​start​ ​the​ ​4th​ ​quarter​ ​and​ ​the Panthers​ ​missed​ ​a​ ​31​ ​yard​ ​field​ ​goal​ ​attempt.​ ​Temple​ ​was​ ​able​ ​to​ ​capitalize​ ​on​ ​the​ ​missed opportunity​ ​by​ ​the​ ​Panthers,​ ​as​ ​Rumfield​ ​found​ ​WR​ ​Xavier​ ​Johnson​ ​for​ ​a​ ​15​ ​yard​ ​touchdown, which​ ​gave​ ​Temple​ ​the​ ​lead​ ​28-27.​ ​The Panthers answered as ​C.J. Williams​ ​was​ ​on​ ​the​ ​receiving​ ​end​ ​of​ ​a​ ​41​ ​yard​ ​touchdown​ ​pass,; ​Midway​ ​went​ ​for​ ​2​ ​but​ ​was unsuccessful​ ​making​ ​the​ ​score​ ​33-28.​

​Midway​ ​was​ ​forced​ ​into​ ​a​ ​fourthe ​and​ ​2​ ​situation​ ​and Mordecai​ ​took​ ​the​ ​ball​ ​on​ ​a​ quarterback keeper and ​was​ ​given​ ​the first​ ​down on a close spot.​ ​Temple​ ​was​ ​flagged​ ​for​ ​an​ ​unsportsmanlike​ ​penalty​ ​after​ ​the​ ​spot​ ​of​ ​the​ ​ball​ ​and Midway​ ​gained​ ​an​ ​extra​ ​15​ ​yards​ ​on​ ​the​ ​drive.​ ​The​ ​ball​ ​was​ ​then​ ​handed​ ​off​ ​to​ ​the​ ​MVP​ ​of​ ​the game​ ​Marcus​ ​Johnson,​ ​who​ ​took​ ​it​ ​in​ ​for​ ​his​ ​second​ ​rushing​ ​touchdown​ ​of​ ​the​ ​night,​ ​bringing the​ ​score​ ​to​ ​40-28​ ​Midway.​

​Temple​ ​was​ ​given​ ​one​ ​last​ ​bit​ ​of​ ​hope,​ ​but​ ​guess​ ​who,​ ​Marcus Johnson​ ​sealed​ ​the​ ​victory​ ​for​ ​the​ ​Panthers​ ​with​ ​a​ quarterback sack. Next​ ​week​ ​the​ ​Panthers​ ​will​ ​host​ ​the​ ​3-0​ ​Waco​ ​High​ ​Lions​ ​in​ ​a​ ​cross-town​ ​rivalry​ ​game.​ ​Temple 2-1​ ​will​ ​travel​ ​to​ Round Rock ​Cedar​ ​Ridge​ ​next​ ​Friday​ ​night.

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