Game day for Panthers

Published 1:01 am Saturday, October 21, 2017

By Kevin Eckleberry

LAGRANGE – Their hopes of winning a conference title might be on life support, but there is still plenty that the LaGrange College Panthers can accomplish.

LaGrange College (3-4 overall), which fell to 2-2 in the USA South with last week’s 34-20 loss to Ferrum, will host Greensboro today at 2 p.m.

If LaGrange College wins its final three games, it will finish with a winning record for the second time in the 12-year history of the program.

LaGrange College’s chances of capturing the USA South championship took a major hit last week.

Huntingdon is in command right now with a 4-0 conference record, Averett is second at 3-1, and LaGrange College and Ferrum are tied at 2-2.

LaGrange College closes the regular season against Huntingdon, and it has already lost to Averett and Ferrum.

Last week’s game was there for the taking, and that has been the case in each one of LaGrange College’s losses.

LaGrange College’s losses to Birmingham Southern and Averett were by a combined seven points, and it was tied with Berry in the second half before losing 28-14.

LaGrange College led in the fourth quarter last week, but Ferrum scored the game’s final 15 points.

LaGrange College had no answer for Ferrum’s Brian Mann, who ran for 254 yards and had five touchdown runs.

For the Panthers, Connor Blair completed 31-of-48 passes for 289 yards with a touchdown to Kiontai Button, and Blair also had a scoring run.

The Panthers’ other points came on a pair of field goals by Zachary Kudwa.

Marcus Campbell continued his big senior season with 10 catches for 98 yards, and Austin Sapp caught six balls for 49 yards.

Blair completed passes to nine different receivers.

Defensive back Peyton Haynes was the leading tackler with seven.

Fabian Ryan had six tackles, and Emmanuel Hopkins, Marc Wilson and Parker Lancaster had five tackles apiece.

For the season, Blair continues to shine.

The senior is averaging 312 passing yards per game with 20 touchdowns, and he’s completing 65 percent of his passes.

Campbell is Blair’s favorite target with 51 catches for 708 yards and four touchdowns, and Sapp has 34 receptions and three touchdowns.

David Apiag has 23 catches with three touchdowns, Button has 14 catches with two touchdowns, and Djeimon Owens has eight receptions, and three of them have gone for touchdowns.

Ryan has enjoyed a standout season on defense with a team-leading 49 tackles, including six for loss.

Rayshaun Bagsby has 29 tackles with four for loss, Shamar Slappy has 27 tackles, and Demetrius Rodgers has made 25 tackles, with five for loss.

For Greensboro, it has been a struggle.

Greensboro is 1-5 overall and 0-3 in the USA South, and it is coming off a 45-0 loss to North Carolina Wesleyan last week.

During a four-game losing streak, Greensboro hasn’t given up fewer than 45 points in a game, and has scored just 29 points of its own.

Tolan Jones has run for 260 yards on 50 attempts with a pair of touchdowns, and quarterback Kamryn Webster averages 62 yards per game through the air and he’s thrown two touchdowns.