Football: Panthers rout Apprentice 42-13 for first win of 2018

Photo by Eddie Sherrer
Photo by Eddie Sherrer

LaGrange got first year coach Earl Chambers his first win with a 42-13 rout of visiting Apprentice in Callaway Stadium on Saturday. Both the Builder and Panthers are 1-2.

"I thought our guys played really well in all phases.," Chambers said. "We had a great week of preparation. All week, our guys were focused and took the coaching.

"Offensively, we did a tremendous job of being balanced. We still need to take care of the ball and understand certain situations. Defensively, we played extremely well. We gave up an early TD and then were able to shut them out for the rest of the game."

LC put together a balanced offense, rushing for 185 yards and passing for another 188 yards. Quarterback Cam Perkins ran for a game-high 88 yards and became the first LC quarterback to rush for three touchdowns in a game. The defense forced four turnovers, leading to three touchdowns. 

The Panthers scored on their first four possessions to lead 28-7 after one quarter. Xavior Coaxum's interception on the third play of the game set the Panthers up at the Builders' 30. Cam Perkins scored the first of his three touchdowns for a 7-0 lead four minutes into the game.

Apprentice put together a 9-play 70-yard drive to tie the game. Terrence Sudberry threw a 19-yard TD pass to Lou Picolo on fourth down to finish the drive. It took the Panthers 10 seconds to answer. Kelly Hall connected on a 68-yard bomb to Marcus Campbell to put LC ahead to stay, 14-7.

After a short punt by the Builders, the Panthers extended their lead. Hall threw his second touchdown, hitting Austin Sapp from 18 yards out. The defense set up the next score when Connor Coddington recovered a fumble at the Builders' 33-yard line. Perkins went around the right side from 7 yards out to make it 28-7. The Panthers took that lead to halftime after a scoreless second quarter.

Perkins capped his day with a 63-yard sprint in the third quarter, the second longest run from scrimmage by a Panther quarterback, to make it 35-7. Special teams set up the final LC score. Lewis Rivers jarred the ball loose from Picolo on a punt with Elijah Robertson recovering at the Builders' 3-yard line. Drew Lewiski ran it in from the 2-yard line to up the lead to 42-7.

Apprentice got a defensive touchdown in the fourth quarter for the 42-13 final. The Builders had only 111 yards of offense in the second half, 62 coming on their final drive. The defense had 10 tackles for loss in the game, including two quarterback sacks.

The Panthers travel to N.C. Wesleyan to open their USA South schedule next Saturday.