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Panthers win thriller against Musketeers

Panthers win thriller against Musketeers Panthers win thriller against Musketeers
By Brandon Miniard, Sports Writer, [email protected]

One week after winning its first game in almost two years, the Corydon Central football team looked to make it two in a row when it traveled to Eastern (Pekin) on Friday.

While the Panthers ultimately came away with the victory, it was anything but a foregone conclusion.

Facing an improved Musketeers’ offense compared to previous years, the Panthers had their hands full, but a connection between senior quarterback Tyler Fessel and senior wide receiver Jalen Fowler with 41 seconds remaining helped the Panthers escape with a 33-32 victory.

The Panthers took the advantage early with a 31-yard passing score, followed by a 69-yard punt return. The Musketeers countered in the second quarter with a trio of scores, including a seven-yard run from Cody Banet to give the hosts the advantage.

That edge didn’t last long as a pair of Panthers’ touchdowns, the first coming off a 76-yard pass, helped the visitors retreat to the locker room with a 26-20 advantage.

The second half began with the Musketeers tying the contest on a six-yard run for the only score of the third quarter.

The hosts took the lead on another six-yard score, but Fowler reeled in Fessel’s catchin the final minute for the equalizer. Sophomore kicker Bryce Gerlach sealed the contest with a go-ahead PAT to give the Panthers their second consecutive victory.

Fessel had a strong night in the air as he went 15 for 34 with 287 yards against four interceptions.

Despite the Musketeers edging the Panthers in total yards, 402-379, the Panthers were more efficient, needing only 53 total plays against the Musketeer’s 78.

Corydon Central will host the Salem Lions on Friday. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.