BURTONSVILLE — The Paint Branch Panthers were able to keep their perfect record alive as they beat the Blair Blazers 20-14 on their home turf.
Blair started the game very quickly, finding the end zone on their first play of the game. Blazers quarterback Matt Siff threw a screen pass to wide receiver Rudy Ngougni, Ngougni turned upfield and blew past the Panthers’ defense for a 68-yard touchdown.
Blair’s Nashton Datis picked off Paint Branch quarterback Norman Douglas Jr. on the ensuing Paint Branch possession, but Paint Branch’s Ishmael Agbodzah immediately responded by picking off Siff, and returning for a Paint Branch touchdown. After a missed extra point, Blair held a 7-6 lead.
Blair increased its lead with a 36-yard catch-and-run touchdown from Siff to Datis, but the Panthers closed the gap to 14-12 after a touchdown pass to Justin Hockaday. At the half, the score remained 14-12.
Paint Branch made a commitment to running the ball in the second half. On the Panthers’ second half opening drive, running the ball paid huge dividends as Justin Page was eventually able to punch it in for a Paint Branch touchdown. Page also got in on a run for a two-point conversion to give his team a 20-14 lead.
That score turned out to be the winning one, as the Paint Branch defense kept Blair off the board in the second half. The Blazers would get the ball with four minutes left and a chance to win the game. But after allowing Blair to drive into Paint Branch territory, the Panthers defense stepped up, and forced a turnover on downs with around two minutes to play, finishing the game.
Paint Branch improved to 4-0 with the win, while Blair dropped to 2-2.
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