Morning Star Staff
The Vernon Panthers followed a simple recipe to defeat the host Pitt Meadows Marauders 20-6 in senior AA high school football Friday night.
Play stingy defense, create some timely turnovers and hit on in a few big plays.
Offensive weapon Levi Nicholas once again stole the show churning out 150 yards on seven carries, including an 80-yard jaunt to put the Panthers up by 14 at the half.
Following a Liam Boyd interception return deep into Pitt Meadows territory, Nicholas called his own number on a one-yard keep to put the game out of reach.
“Levi was outstanding for us again today,” said Cats head coach Sean Smith. “He has a gear that very few players have and it allows him to break some big plays. He had three impact plays on the ground that really opened things up for us.”
Zack Hyer opened the scoring, snaring a jump ball and then evading two defenders before scampering into the end zone for a 35-yard score.
The Panther defense was stingy all day, allowing the hosts one trip to the red zone late in the fourth.
Standout defensive ends Josh Hyer (five tackles) and Ben Hladik (eight tackles, one sack) controlled the edges all game and made it tough to run outside.
“Our ends were lights out again today and so was our secondary,” added Smith.
Justin Haverkamp was 4-for-8 and 41 yards passing and one TD. Tyler Semeniuk chipped in with five tackles and one sack, while Liam Boyd rang up one interception.
The Panthers host Westyde Blue Wave Friday in their first league game of the season (3:30) at Panther Field.