The Woodlawn Panthers, led by Head Coach Marcus Randall, traveled to East Iberville to host the University Lab Cubs on Thursday night in the season opener for the Panthers. Even though the Panthers are listed as the home team in this matchup, they were forced to travel away from their field. This being due to their field being unplayable, even with what minimal repairs EBR made in the offseason. It is unknown if, or when, Woodlawn will be back in Panther Stadium as the home team as it is unclear when the proper repairs will be made by EBR.
The Cubs received the opening kickoff and were forced to punt a pass was called back due to penalty. Woodlawn would take the ball at the 43-yard line but were unable to capitalize and gave it back after three plays.
After almost the entire first quarter, University Lab struck first with a touchdown run with 2:55 left in the quarter. They would go on to miss the point after touchdown attempt and take a 6-0 in the first.
Woodlawn never could seem to find its footing offensively in the first half and struggled to move the ball. The defense for the Panthers stood strong and were a bright spot tonight. Despite the scoreboard, the defense stepped up in big spots in two consecutive redzone stops after the offensive gave University Lab good field position.
The offense began to pick up steam in the fourth quarter of the contest, led by a running attack from Woodlawn’s Jayveon Haynes, who carried the ball for 48 yards on their last two drives.
The passing game between senior quarterback Rickie Collins and the one-two punch of Clayton Adams and Tramon Douglas II also started finding its rhythm to the tune of 36 yards between them on the last two drives.
However, it was too late, as the University Lab Cubs had jumped out to a 25-0 lead when they got the ball back with 5:50 left in the game.
While it wasn’t the desired outcome, the defense shined today led by the defensive front. Head Coach Marcus Randall had this to say about the defensive side of the ball.
“Defensively we played stellar. We put them in bad positions all night, and the defense stood up strong. They stood like a wall.”
The Panthers drop their first game of the season and look to bounce back next week when they travel to take on Lafayette Christian in their first official away game in Lafayette.