For the past seven seasons, facing off against Biggs on the football field has been an unenviable task for the Maxwell Panthers, and that trend continued last Friday night as the No. 5 Panthers saw their season come to an end, after failing 28-12 on the road to the No. 4 Wolverines in a Northern Section CIF Division V playoff game.
Five giveaways proved to be the difference in the game, according to head coach Lane Davis, who otherwise liked what he saw from his squad.
“We didn’t have great field position, but we moved the ball well, and minus the five turnovers, really we played well enough to win,” Davis said.
After a scoreless first quarter, Maxwell evened the game at 6-6, after Ignacio Velazquez found the end zone from four yards away.
Unfortunately for the Panthers, however, Biggs would go on to score 20 unanswered points to put the game unreachable.
Yet, the Panthers fought until the end, getting their final points of the season in the fourth quarter, when quarterback Dillon Dry connected with receiver Rudi Gonzalez for a 30-yard touchdown.
For the game, Dry rushed 15 times for 60 yards, in addition to completing 11 passes for 177 yards, while Gonzalez made two catches for 72 yards.
In his last game for the Panthers, Velazquez tallied 38 yards rushing and 32 receiving.
While the loss was disappointing, there are many positives from the season for Maxwell to build upon next year, as Davis explained.
“This has been a super group,” Davis said. “They have become passionate about football, working hard on the field and in the classroom. They have shown both physical and mental growth in terms of the game, and have come a long way. I am very proud of the way we handled ourselves on the field, and I am extremely optimistic about this program’s future.”
The Panthers ended the season with a 5-6 overall record, going 4-3 in the Cascade Valley League, and are expecting to bring back their JV program in 2022 to further bolster their program. ■