After coming up with an unlikely upset in the first round of the district playoffs, the North Penn-Mansfield Panthers were unable to knock off the number one seeded Southern Columbia Tigers football team.
The Panthers lost by a score of 42-0. Despite coming up short against one of the best teams in the nation, the Panthers were able to hold the Tigers scoreless in the second half and never gave up throughout.
The Panthers came into the matchup knowing they were facing an uphill battle, but were able to scrap throughout and accomplished more on offense than most teams who have played the Tigers have all season long. Junior Colton Litzelman was able to put 144 yards despite throwing two interceptions which was one of the highest totals against this Tigers defense all season long.
The Tigers are considered to be one of the best teams in the state, and it showed as they came out firing early and often against the Panthers. The Tigers opened up their scoring with a touchdown just a minute in the game on a 10-yard touchdown pass. After Southern Columbia scored three more touchdowns the Panthers found themselves in an early hole, down 28-0 early in the game.
The second quarter was more of the same, with the Tigers scoring on a long touchdown run of 89 yards as well as a touchdown on an interception return to run the score up to 42-0 with a lot of time left to play.
Going into the second half, the Panthers defense was able to buckle down, led by senior Logan Tokarz who recorded eight tackles and a forced fumble in the effort.
The Tigers were held scoreless in the second half for just the second time all season, but the Panthers were unable to capitalize on the other side of the ball The swarming defense of the Tigers has allowed only 26 points throughout the entire year, as well as only 286 rushing yards up to this point and continued to dominate in this game.
The Panthers offense struggled to move the ball, but were led by Litzelman who threw for 144 yards, and also Koleton Roupp who led his team in rushing with 24 yards and in receiving with five catches for 63 yards.
Despite the loss, the Panthers were able to overcome a lot of adversity throughout the season, coming in with a young roster and losing a large number of key contributors from the past season, they were able to scrape and claw their way into a second round playoff game.
Also after losing three straight, they were able to avenge a loss in the first round of the playoffs against their rival Hornets to secure their place in the second round of district play.
The Panthers will return a large majority of their starters next season and will look to improve on their 5-7 season as they move into the 2020 season.
Passing Yards: Colton Litzelman 16-26 145 yards 2 INT.
Rushing Yards: Koleton Roupp 8-24; Noah Spencer 6-12; Bryan Bogaczyk 5-(-4); Colton Litzelman 1-(-1); Cameron Fabian 1-(-2); Kohen Lehman 1-(-1).
Receiving Yards: Koleton Roupp 5-63; Kaelan Matczak 1-34; Noah Spencer 5-27; Brandon Thompson 1-13; Logan Tokarz 1-5; Bryan Bogaczyk 1-2; Mitchael Tice 1-1.