Pennington powers past Cleveland



The J.B. Pennington Tigers scored on the first play of the game and were never seriously threatened in a 26-6 victory over the home-standing Cleveland Panthers last Friday night.

Devyn Murphree put the Tigers on the board first with a 54- yard sprint off the left side on the first snap of the game. The extra point was wide but Pennington led 6-0.

Cleveland moved down the field on the ensuing possession but turned the ball over on downs at the Tiger 27.

Pennington moved 73 yards on the next possession and Lee Morton hit Derik Vanmaanen with a 23-yard touchdown pass. The extra point was missed but the Tiger lead was now 12-0.

Neither team got on the board again until the third quarter. The Tigers moved 50 yards in just four plays with Murphree gaining 45 of the 50 yards, including the score on a four-yard run. Morton hit sophomore Logan Cornelius for the two-point conversion and the Tiger lead was 20-0.

Cleveland was on the move to start the fourth quarter but the Tiger defense came up with a big stop at the Pennington 3.

On the second play of the Pennington possession, the Tigers got a break after Cleveland fumbled on an interception return. Pennington moved the length of the field in 12 plays with Cody Hodge scoring from a yard out.

Cleveland got the final points of the night on the last snap of the game when Chas Cornelius hit Colton Bearden on an 18- yard touchdown pass.

Cleveland generated some offense, finishing with 227 total yards and 12 first downs. However, the Tigers came up with the big play when needed and kept the Panthers out of the end zone.

Billy Rushing led the Panthers on the ground with 55 yards on 13 carries while Tyler Robertson added 35 yards on five attempts.

Dusty Cornelius completed 8 of 22 passes for 74 yards while Caleb Woodall (4 reception for 39 yards) and Bearden (4 for 34, touchdown) led the receivers.

Pennington got a big night on the ground from Murphree who picked up 186 yards and two touchdowns on 15 carries.

Morton connected on 4 of 8 passes for 59 yards and a touchdown with one interception.

Vanmaanen caught two passes for 42 yards and a touchdown.

Blake Morris had a huge night on defense for the Tigers. The senior defensive linemen led the Tigers with 10 tackles and also added three sacks.

J.B. Pennington improved to 4-1 on the year while Cleveland fell to 2-3.