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Varsity football triumphs over Freedom

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Warming up on the field, the varsity football team runs through drills. They defeated Freedom 42-3 Oct. 19.

Warming up on the field, the varsity football team runs through drills. They defeated Freedom 42-3 Oct. 19.

Kate Caranante

Kate Caranante

Warming up on the field, the varsity football team runs through drills. They defeated Freedom 42-3 Oct. 19.

Kate Caranante, Staff Writer

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The varsity football team traveled to Freedom High School Oct. 19, where they put up 42 points and gave up only three, improving to 7-1 on the season.   

“We did move the ball around a lot, and we had good conversions, but I wish we could have moved a little bit quicker in the first half,” junior defensive lineman Aidan Giansante said. “But once we got in the second half, it was over at that point.”  

The team kicked off at 7:30 p.m. to the Patriots, who were forced to punt on their first possession. Following the punt, junior quarterback Tucker Gleason connected with senior wide receiver Britt Barksdale in the end zone. After senior wide receiver Leonard Parker ran in the two-point conversion, the early lead was 8-0.   

Two plays later, sophomore defensive end Ty Love recovered a fumble at the Freedom 31-yard line.   

“It was kind of crazy because it was between my legs, so I didn’t know if I had it or not,” Love said. “So knowing I had it was great.”  

After regaining possession, Gleason connected Parker in the end zone with just under three minutes to go in the first quarter. The two-point conversion was no good, which made the score 14-0.  

Two minutes into the second quarter, senior wide receiver Romain “Smoke” Mungin took it five yards into the end zone. The score was extended to 21-0 with the extra point by senior kicker Evan Passath.  

“It’s called a dart, it’s like a pitch basically,” Mungin said. “Once I got it, I had to go around the edge. Once I got around the edge, I knew I wasn’t going to make it, so I dove for the pylon.”  

On Freedom’s next drive, junior defensive back Dylan Barry picked off a pass and returned it for a touchdown. Senior quarterback Jude May caught the two-point conversion, making the score 29-0.   

“I was back-peddling, covering the route,” Barry said. “I looked at the quarterback, and right when he threw it, I just bounced on the ball. I was excited. I was just in the moment.”  

With five minutes remaining in the first half Freedom got on the board with a 35-yard field goal. With the ball back, Freedom intercepted a pass and took over at the Panther 30-yard line, but before they could get into the end zone, senior defensive back Cameron Shaw intercepted a pass.  

“I saw the slot receiver come up into the flat, and I saw the quarterback rolling out to my side,” Shaw said. “He kind of motioned for the receiver to go into the end zone, and I was just in the right place at the right time.”  

The varsity football team headed into halftime up 29-3 after recovering a Freedom fumble to end the first half.  

Neither team put up any points in the third quarter, but 45 seconds into the fourth quarter Gleason passed it ten yards to senior running back Walter Wilbon III in the end zone, making it 36-3 with the extra point by Passath.  

With 10 minutes and 30 seconds to go, Barksdale intercepted a Freedom pass which set up a 9-yard touchdown run by May with just over seven minutes left in the game, making it 42-3.   

The game was sealed on an interception by senior safety Isaac Sames with 30 seconds left. With the 42-3 victory, the Panthers get their seventh win.  

“We played alright,” Shaw said. “But we definitely have things we could work on, and we could definitely have done better.”

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Varsity football triumphs over Freedom