YORKVILLE — Shenandoah made the more than hour-long trip to southern Jefferson County worthwhile on Friday night, rebounding from their first loss of the season to recover from an early two-touchdown deficit and a 42-36 win over host Buckeye Local to win Panthers. Improvement to 5:1.
Buckeye Local, on the other hand, falls back to 2-4 despite strong games this season.
The Panthers opened the game with a 10-play drive that covered 60 yards and ate up 5:49 a.m., topped off when junior quarterback Skyler Ebright went to the center from 9 yards. Wyatt Kalman’s PAT was good for a Panthers 7-0 lead.
The Zeps couldn’t get their vaunted passing game to work on their first drive, but that was nullified when Trey Hoover picked up frosh QB Braxton Barnett and put him 37 yards back on the visitors’ 16.
After a penalty, the hosts started at 26, Ebright hitting Dylan Palmer from 18 yards into the back end zone for a touchdown. Kalman was true again, increasing the Panthers’ lead to 14-0.
However, Shenandoah wasn’t out yet. Barnett started the ensuing drive with a 40-yard dash, then found pay dirt three games later and found Hunter Yates in front of the end zone for a 38-yard score. The conversion pass failed, leaving the Big Green 14-6.
The Zeps defense forced a punt and then marched 80 yards with eight straight passes, many of which were short screens to the right touchline, with Barnett finding Yates for the third time on the drive from seven yards to score. The conversion pass was disabled, leaving the Zeps 14-12 at the 5:33 mark of second.
Going deep into her playbook, Buckeye ran a single-wing between Hoover and Ebright that switched back and forth at quarterback, with Ebright slipping through the line and going 44 yards for the score. Palmer led the conversion to a 22-12 lead with 3:09 in the first.
The Noble Countians effectively alternated between pass and run, driving the hosts with less than a minute to play. The Panthers made a fourth stop but were flagged for a face mask. On the next play, Barnett executed the option perfectly, turning the ball to Feldner to score from a yard. Barnett then met Wade Miley for the conversion pass, taking the score to a 22-20 mark just before halftime in favor of the hosts.
Shenandoah started the second half by rushing for 82 yards in 11 games that lasted nearly four minutes. Barnett could repeatedly find receivers on the sidelines, run screens and lay down passes to take small chunks out of the field. The frog ended the scoring verse by diving in from a yard to give the visitors their first head start of the night. The conversion pass was batted away, but Shenandoah led 26-20 at the third’s 8:08 mark.
Buckeye wasn’t down long, riding on the legs of Hoover, who had five carries for 56 yards of the 80 they had to cover before Ebright found pay dirt from the five again. Jacob Berry swept in for the conversion, bringing the blue-silver back to 30-26.
Shenandoah appeared to piece together a good following drive, but the Panthers erased that when David Edwards and Issac Chandler together slumped Barnett in third and Chandler dragged him into fourth to hand the ball back to the hosts.
The teams traded punts before the Panthers were back in business and rushed for 57 yards in five games, with Ebright scoring his fourth touchdown of the night to put Buckeye by 10, which remained the lead when the conversion run failed .
From that point on, Shenandoah showed the big play ability of their passing game, which they have shown many times this season. On her first play from scrimmage on her subsequent drive, Barnett lofted a pass toward Yates that appeared well over the six-foot-tall junior’s head. The receiver climbed the ladder to snatch the ball out of the air, slipped from the grips of two would-be tacklers, and launched down the right touchline to elude the Panthers’ secondary and take it en route to a 65-yard overtake result. Barrett then beat Ratiaczak for the conversion to close the Panthers’ lead to 36-34.
Buckeye Local failed to get things going on their next drive and went three-and-out, taking advantage of just over 2:20 and handing the ball back to the visitors with 6:21 remaining. The Zeps needed just 11 seconds of that time, however, as Barnett fell back to go first and saw Brenden Portman wide open in the center of the field. The freshman fired a pass to Junior and seconds later he was over the goal line, bringing Shenandoah back up. Feldner stormed to a two and put the visitors back in the lead 42-36.
Buckeye had another chance and put in a strong drive, but Yates beat Ebright 1:21 to seal the win.
Shenandoah 42, Buckeye Local 36
Shenandoah 0 20 6 16 42
Horse Chestnut Local 14 8 8 6 36
B – Run Ebright 9 (Kalman kick)
B — Palmer 18 pass by Ebright (Kalman)
S – Yates 38 pass by Barnett (pass failed)
S – Yates 7 pass by Barnett (pass failed)
B – Ebright 44 barrel (Palmer barrel)
S – Lauf Feldner 1 (Miley pass from Barnett)
S -Barnett 1 run (pass failed)
B – Run Ebright 3 (berry run)
B – Ebright 1 run (run failed)
S-Yates 65 pass by Barnett (Rataiczak pass by Barnett
S – Portman 74 Pass by Barnett (Feldner Run)
Rushing: Shenandoah 24-111-2TD (Barnett 14-72-1TD; Feldner 9-37-1TD; Portman 1-2); Buckeye Local 42-243-4TD (Hoover 21-149; Ebright 16-72-4TD; McDiffitt 1-(-1); Rousch 2-14; Berry 1-3; Palmer 1-6).
Passing: Shenandoah 22-32-272-3TD-1X (all by Barnett); Buckeye Local 9-13-84-TD-1X (Ebright 8-12-76-1-1X; Hoover 1-1-8).
Received: Shenandoah 22-272-3TD (Portman 11-93; Yates 7-141-3TD; Miley 3-75): Buckeye Local 9-84-TD (Palmer 4-55-TD; McDiffitt 4-21; Ebright 1- 8th).
First Downs: Shenandoah 18; Buckeye Local 19
Penalties: Shenandoah 8-55; Buckeye Local 9-67
Fumble: Shenandoah 0-0; Buckeye Local 5-0