Photos Courtesy of Joanna McMahan
Devils Offense Overpowers Panthers
It’s a beautiful night for High School Football at Boyce Deitz Field as the Franklin Panthers travel to Bryson City to face off against the red hot Swain County Maroon Devils. With Swain’s star player, Josiah Glaspie, dealing with a thigh injury his backup James Stroman did not disappoint. Franklin starts off the running game with Junior back Eli Brown having consecutive carries to get the Panthers near the red zone, which ultimately ends up into a field goal by William Sinclair, to put Franklin up 3-0. Swain County however came out of the second quarter hot with a 60 yard rush by Joshua Collins, which led to a 25 yard rush by James Stroman to get the Devils their first score of the night, putting them ahead 7-3.
Joshua Collins had a big stop on the defensive side of the ball that ignited his night, as he broke loose for a big 39 yard rush and a 16 yard touchdown run on the ensuing Swain County offensive drive. The Panthers look to respond with the passing game, as sophomore quarterback Brock Bradley leads Franklin down the field. Swain County once again has troubles with penalties, & Franklin finds themselves inside the 15 yard line only to have to settle for another field goal by Sinclair to make the score 13-6. With the clock ticking down towards halftime, the Panther defense shows signs of hope, as Braylon Dezarn comes down with an interception to give Franklin the ball back, however the half comes to a close before any Panther offense becomes present.
The Devils come out of the half flying around, proving why their running game is one of the best around with rushes by Winchester, Stroman, and Collins to march down the field. Ultimately, an 11 yard rush by Stroman once again added to Swain’s lead, 19-6. Just as Franklin looks to start up the offense, defensive back Andruw Cody comes down with his second interception of the season and runs it back to the house for a Pick 6, extending Swain County’s lead, 26-6.
All of the momentum looks to be with the home team as Swain’s Zeke Glaspie recovers an onside kick, followed by a 34 yard keep by the Quarterback Winchester to get the devils in the end zone once again, making the score 33-6. The Franklin defense bounces back with a fumble recovery by Talon Smith, only for the offense to go 3 and out. Swain showed no sign of slowing down, with a breakout run of 64 yard rush by backup QB, Andruw Cody to add to their lead, 40-6. Franklin responds as Bradley finds receiver Wyatt Cantrell for a 30 yard pass to try to shorten the Devil’s lead, 40-13. The Devils run out the clock as time expires and take down the Panthers with a final score of 40-13.
Look Ahead: The Swain County Maroon Devils will travel to Waynesville to face off against the Tuscola Mountaineers, looking to add to their winning streak. The Franklin Panthers will host as the East Henderson Eagles will make the trip out to Franklin.