Updated Sat, Nov 9, 2013 1:15 am
The No. 4 Maysville Panthers used a dynamic rushing attack to beat No. 5 Bexley in their first ever home playoff game, 35-14. The win marks Maysville’s first playoff victory in school history.
Friday’s matchup was all about the ground game and which defense would be more successful in shutting down the run. Maysville proved to be successful, taking the lead early and controlling the game on the ground.
The Maysville defense was not only successful in holding the Lions’ offense; it also forced four turnovers – three by forced fumble – on the night. Bexley’s top rushers, Javell Gray and Andre Stewart, were limited on the ground throughout the contest.
The Panther offense struggled to get the game going but eventually found the end zone on a flea flicker, resulting in a 9-yard touchdown reception by Judd Murvine. The score put Maysville ahead 7-0 with just seconds left in the first quarter. Bexley fumbled the ball on its next possession to put Maysville in fantastic field position. The turnover led to a 49-yard pass from Jacob Miller to Chase Roberts for another Maysville touchdown to put the Panthers up 14-0 midway through the second.
Bexley quarterback Andre Stewart finally responded with a 60-yard touchdown run to put the Lions on the board late in the second quarter.
Halftime rolled around, and Bexley coach John Smith tried to get the Lions motivated and their offense rolling to start the second half.
The offense did not receive the message, as Maysville was able to shut down the Bexley offense completely in the third quarter. The Panthers’ running game continued to be dominant, as they put another two touchdowns on the board before the start of the fourth. Maysville held on in the final quarter to advance to the Region 13 semifinals.
Gridiron Glory Player of the Year semifinalist Jordan Hayes had 155 yards on the ground and 2 touchdowns including a 34-yard score. Chase Roberts also chipped in with 55 yards on the ground. The two combined for 210 yards of Maysville’s 217 rushing yards in the game.
Maysville (8-3) draws the No. 8 Steubenville Big Red in the regional semifinals, Friday, Nov. 15 at 7:30 p.m. The game will be at a neutral site.