JV Panthers crawl back to tame Bucs

panthers_ofcThe Junior Varsity Hamilton Wentworth Panthers took their show on the road this past Sunday, making the trek to Newmarket with their sights set on a victory.

The York Simcoe Bucs had other plans, taking a 7-1 lead into the second half after a meager performance by the Panther offense in the opening stanza. Coach Chris Watson rallied his troops during the intermission and challenged the team to step up and prove themselves in the second half. Both sides of the ball responded immediately with two third-quarter touchdowns that secured a 15-14 win. The Panthers improved their second place record to 5-2.

The first score of the second half resulted from a Cam Belavia interception, which he returned for 60-plus yards to put the offense inside the host’s five-yard line. That led to a TD by quarterback Mat Krizmanich. Running backs Quinn Newman (17 carries, 80 yards) and Jeremy Haggarty (15 carries, 66 yards) proved to be too much for the Bucs defense to handle, leading to a drive down the field for an eventual second TD for Krizmanich.

Big defensive efforts came from Panthers’ linebackers Shane McMullin, Dave Szczyry, Jeff Francis, and Derek Adam combing for over 30 tackles. Other key defensive performances came from James Parry, Alex Shaver and Wes King.

The Panthers will close out their regular season Sunday (July 26) vs. the Jr. Argos in Toronto.