I Have A Question: What does “Friday Night Lights” mean to you? A few of our Jackson Football Fans shared, – “It brings me lots of excitement!” – “It’s on – It’s payday!” – “There is no feeling like getting to go out and play in front of your town with your best friends.”
The cheers and the bright lights – Oh, those Friday Night Lights. It was another cool and brisk night for football as the Perry Panthers entered the Robert Fife Stadium to face the Jackson Polar Bears. The Panthers Student Section was filled with bright pink and a lot of sparkles for “Barbie Night”. As the game began, you could hear the sound of a megaphone coming from the Perry stands, cheering on their team. From the other end of the field, you could see the Jackson’s Student Section, this week, was displaying red, white, and blue.
One of the first highlights of the evening was the Jackson’s Purple Army celebrating Past, Present, and Future Night. Throughout the night, at one point, there were at least 450 musicians musically entertaining the crowd. It was amazing! The Jackson band also honored all the past mascots as well. The oldest Polar Bear Mascot is from 1963! Tonight, was also Jackson’s “Homecoming Game”. You could feel the magic in the air. Tonight, was going to be memorable!
Jackson’s #92, So. Cooper Mizeur, started off the game with a high flying kick off to Perry as the past, present, and future Polar Bears cheered their team on. The Panthers Roy Simmons #2 and Christian Ivanic #20 were back awaiting the catch to start Perry with an advantage. Ivanic receives the catch and returns the ball 10 yards. The Panthers QB #9 Austin Mattox takes the field.
This year Perry’s offense has been known for its running instead of passing plays. Perry’s average rushing yards per game is 183.8 compared to their passing yards, which is 49.0. Jackson was waiting to see if Perry was going to have a solid running game tonight. The PHS – QB, Mattox, hands off the ball to #23 Marcellys Harris. Jackson’s Sr., Joseph Lattarulo #16, tackles Harris- 1st Down. Next up, Perry’s #25 Sr. Ryder Hartshorn/RB is very strong and quick on his feet. As he is handed off the ball, #36 Myles Hendrickson meets him with a strong tackle. The Panther QB, #9 Mattox, decides to throw the football to #34 Scott. Incomplete- 3rd down (3rd and 6th). The Bears, Nolan Foster #1, has a great tackle on #20 Ivanic as Perry tries to advance down the field. Perry continues to be met with Jackson’s outstanding and solid defense. It does not seem like their running game will prevail against the Polar Bears. The Bears are just a solid wall.
As Jackson’s offensive takes the field, it will be exciting in Week 5 to see if they continue to dominate their opponents. One of the first throws is to #2 Sr. Anthony Fuline WR/DB. The throw was nicely broken up by Perry. Next #3 Lucas Ecrement, The Bears QB, completes a bomb to Jr. #7 Noah Colando. Where he is tackled by #15, 5 ‘4, Vann Riordan- 1st and 10…. Time Out- Perry. Following the time out, Ecrement keeps the ball and is chased out of bounds by #8 Carter Foster- another 1st Down. As Jackson’s #51, Teigen Essig, hikes the ball to his QB you could tell that something special was about to happen. A great pass to #21 Sr. Kyle Benson is completed. The Polar Bears first score of the night ends up coming from #15 Cooper Geissinger – TOUCHDOWN!!! PAT- Good! JHS-7 PHS-0.
Still in the 1st Quarter, Perry continued to try to run the ball against Jackson’s powerful defense. The Panther’s seemed to continue to struggle. Polars Bears, Kyle Benson, was back to receive. Jackson ends up turning the ball over rather quickly as Perry’s offense takes the field. #25 Hartshorn is going to be the player that Jackson needs to stop. The next several plays involve #25 Hartshorn carried the ball down the field. As the 1st quarter comes to an end the score still remains JHS- 7 PHS- 0.
At the start of the second quarter, Perry makes a valiant effort to make it to the end zone with no prevail. As Jackson regains possession of the ball their QB Ecrement works his magic as they are just stopped sort of the goal line. The Polar Bear fans stand to their feet, and you hear a roar across the stadium. With the next touch of the ball, Jackson’s #6 Carson Pastorius scores their next TOUCHDOWN!!! JHS – 14. PHS – 0.
Jackson’s Geissinger and Stanley lead their defense. And just like that, The Polar Bears have the ball back. QB Ecrement sails another incredible completed pass to #7 Colando to move the ball down the field. With 2:41 left in the Second Quarter, Ecrement keeps the ball and scrambles out of bounds. That is followed by a bullet pass to #21 Benson. With the next play, as the ball takes flight, Perry sneaks in for the interception. The Panther’s time with the ball didn’t last long. At the 2:07 mark, the Bears #9 Zach Ferguson recovers the ball.
As Jackson’s offense takes the field. You can see the frustration with Perry’s players. JHS- QB Ecrement continues his solid leadership by completing another pass to #6 Carson Pastorius. At the end of the play, you can see the irritation of Perry increase. A few of their players begin to push and shove some of Jackson’s players. The referees quickly intervened. The extra physicality seemed to fuel Jackson’s players. The next two plays, with #2 Anthony Fuline and #9 Zach Ferfuson, filled the Bears with fire. Jackson’s fans could sense another score was about to take place. #6 Carson Pastorius- TOUCHDOWN!!! #92 Cooper Mizeur with the extra point. JHS-20 PHS-0.
Even down 20-0 the Panthers still decide to continue to run the ball. Marcellys Harris #23, moves quick to his left but is met with an excellent tackle by Jackson’s #49 Mitchell Braucher/ILB. On the next play, #37 Foster Stanely, got a hand on the ball. And with that Perry’s pass was incomplete. Perry’s best bet was to get the ball back into the hands of their #25 Hartshorn- Good call – First Down. Unfortunately, that was a short-lived highlight for Perry. Jackson’s football. As Jackson’s offense continues to dominate, Jr. #18 Kristian Satterfield RB/DB carries the ball for Jackson’s first down. Jackson’s solidly continues to move the ball down the field with QB #3 Ecrement keeping the ball on the carry for the second down. Satterfield’s quick feet continue to get open as he receives a screen pass from Ecrement. And just like that- TOUCHDOWN!!! #7 Noah Colando. WHAT A GREAT PASS! JHS- 28 PHS-0.
Wait, Hold on! Here comes the Panthers! #20 Sr. Christian Ivanic/RB returns the kickoff for Perry’s first touchdown of the night. The PAT is good. JHS-28 PHS-7.
#21 Kyle Benson back for the kickoff of Perry’s #5 Brock Huggins. Is Perry going to do an onside kick? It looks like Perry is trying to catch Jackson off guard. Definitely an unexpected play this early in the game. By choosing to use the onside kick the Panthers are hoping that their kicking team is going to give them a chance of regaining possession. Well, as the Bears take possession of the ball, three plays later – TOUCHDOWN, Jackson!!! JHS – 35 PHS – 7
Jackson’s kicking team follows suit with their own onside kick. As Perry still chooses to run the ball, the next two plays are stopped by WR/DB Kyle Benson #21. Perry’s QB, Mattox, throws a high-flying ball to #1 Jayden Wilson. The throw was incomplete and almost grabbed by Jackon’s DB – Cooper Geissinger. Jackson’s #49, Mitchell Braucher puts a hard hit and stops Perry’s Hartshorn. Kyson Walker #4, for the Panthers, forces his way into the end zone. Touchdown for Perry. JHS -35 PHS – 14
Perry decides to attempt another onside kick. Perry’s, Huggins #5, kicks the ball to the right of the field, out of bounds at the 45-yard line. Jackson’s offense does not maintain the football for very long this possession. With Perry getting the ball back, they were then unable to take advantage of this opportunity. Even though in the 3rd Quarter, it looked like Perry was making a comeback scoring 14 points. There was no stopping a total team effort of Jackson’s defense or offensive team. End of Quarter 3- JHS – 41 PHS – 14.
Into the 4th Quarter, the ball game went into Running Clock Rules. Right before that decision was made, Polar Bear QB, Ecrement had a spectacular throw to #11 Jamahl Phillips/WR. Phillips takes off and has a phenomenal run into the end zone. TOUCHDOWN, Polar Bears!!! Final: JHS – 49 PHS – 14
“FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS” – There is nothing better! Congratulations, Coach Rohr, and the Jackson Polar Bears!!! Go Bears!
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