BY RAY VAN COR
The Greenville Standard
Friday night lights shined brightly over Georgiana’s Harmon Field for the second round of Alabama High School Athletic Association 1A playoffs. The 10-1 Georgiana Panthers took on the 9-1 Red Devils of Maplesville.
Georgiana seemed very optimistic judging from the banner that hung on their sideline fence and referenced the opposing Red Devils, “Tell your girlfriends you’ll be free next Friday.”
First quarter action brought a host of penalties for the Panther’s but Georgiana struck first, putting up seven points with six minutes to go. Maplesville wouldn’t be denied; the Red Devils with 1:56 left scored and tied the game.
In the second quarter with 1:05 left, Georgiana’s defense held the Red Devils deep in their territory. Panther defensive end Wesley Turner blocked the Maplesville punt putting the Panthers in scoring position.
Georgiana garnered a first down on the goal but four attempts later, just couldn’t punch it in. The clock ran out on the half leaving it a 7–7 ballgame.
The third quarter started with Georgiana receiving the ball and they drove 30 yards but fumbled and Maplesville recovered. The Panther’s defense managed to stop the Red Devils with 7:50 left in the quarter.
Georgiana’s offense confidently charged down the field scoring and with an extra point kick the Panthers took the lead 14-7.
Maplesville returned fire and drove down and put seven points on the board, tying the game at 14 all. The fourth quarter was a defensive struggle for both sides, however, with 3:50 remaining on the game clock the Red Devils manage to score taking the lead 21-14.
In the final minutes the Panthers were moving the ball when a non-call for obvious pass interference from not by one but by three Maplesville defenders stopped Georgiana’s momentum.
Maplesville held on and rode out the clock to win, and bringing Georgiana’s successful season to an end. Maplesville will advance to the quarter finals and face 10-1 Lanett Panthers who defeated Marengo County Friday night 14-6.
The Greenville Standard extends congratulations to the Georgiana Panthers on a great season.