“I’m enjoying the moment right now,” Lapsley said. “Football is a long season, a lot of grinding, so I’m just taking a moment to smell the roses right now. So very proud of these young men. They have worked incredibly hard all year.”
Now, the Panthers, ranked high in the 4A, and the Eagles, near the bubble of a playoff berth yet again, await for the 4A playoff bracket to be revealed.
“Hats off to them, they were just physical up front. It’s a tough offense to mimic in practice, and I thought our kids played really hard. I didn’t see anyone give up or anything like that,” Eagles head coach Todd Hanley said. “That’s always positive when you see some fight.”
Running through them
It was all ground game for the Panthers.
While others got their yards, there wasn’t much of a question if any other player would make their mark in a game with so much anticipation and with so much on the line other than Bennett.
Bennett did his thing, keeping the Panthers offense going with chunk gain after chunk gain. The record-breaking running back averaged 5.7 yards per rush as he was the workhorse once again for the Panthers.
He even completed an 11-yard pass to teammate Tyson Fousel to set himself up for a short touchdown run with just 30 seconds left in the second quarter — a score that put the Panthers up 21-7 just before halftime.