Fairbanks’ Brogan Green is pictured in this file photo from earlier in the season. Green rushed for more than 200 yards during FHS’ 48-42 win over Greenon on Friday. (Journal-Tribune photo by Chad Williamson)
The Fairbanks Panthers withstood three fourth-quarter touchdowns by Greenon on Friday to edge the Knights, 48-42.
The Panthers (2-2) took a 35-21 margin into the final period and maintained their poise during those 12 minutes to earn the victory.
Both teams put a touchdown on the scoreboard during the opening quarter.
Greenon took a 7-0 lead with 8:15 remaining when quarterback Cade Rice, the Ohio Heritage Conference’s leading passer, completed a 10-yard toss to Kameron Cox.
Nathan Hawks’ extra point gave the Knights a 7-0 lead.
Fairbanks responded approximately three minutes later when Braxton Wilhelm fired a 59-yard scoring strike to Trey Good.
Cade Ziegler booted the extra point to deadlock the score at 7-all.
Wilhelm used his legs to put Fairbanks up by a touchdown within the first two minutes of the second quarter.
His five-yard run and Ziegler’s conversion gave FHS a 14-7 lead.
Greenon, however, answered back with a three-yard pass from Rice to Luke Downing.
Hawks matched Ziegler’s extra point to tie the contest at 14-14.
The Panthers, however, grabbed the halftime lead.
With 3:34 left until the break, Riordin Stauffer punched the pigskin into the end zone from a yard out.
Ziegler was spot-on with the PAT, sending FHS into the turn with a 21-14 advantage.
Brogan Green ran the ball in for a pair of third-quarter TDs as Fairbanks increased its lead.
Green covered 11 and 61 yards on his scoring jaunts.
Ziegler continued the accuracy with his toe as the Panthers climbed to a 35-14 spread.
Taking a page from Wilhelm’s playbook, Rice took off for a 40-yard touchdown as the clock slipped to 42 seconds remaining in the period.
Hawks kicked the extra point, pulling the home team to within 35-21 by the end of the quarter.
Wilhelm ran for his second touchdown two minutes into the fourth quarter. His score from the 20-yard-line pushed Fairbanks out to a 41-21 lead.
The extra point failed.
The Knights made things a bit interesting with a pair of touchdowns approximately six minutes apart.
Evan Davis threw a 20-yard TD pass to Bass Moore and Rice carried the ball into the end zone from the 22.
Hawks’ extra points narrowed the Knights’ gap to 41-35.
Green once again carried the offensive load for the Panthers.
The timer read 2:09 to play in the game when he sped 71 yards for the touchdown.
Ziegler kicked the extra point for a 48-35 margin.
Green’s last touchdown proved to be vital as the Knights came back and scored a TD with 48 ticks on the timer.
Rice completed a pass to Clay Hough for the touchdown.
Hawks’ extra point closed out the scoring.
“We were involved in a little bit of a shootout tonight,” said FHS head coach Patrick Cotter. “Greenon scored a couple of touchdowns on us late, but the guys handled it well.
“The team dug deep and played for 48 minutes,” he said. “I’m proud of the entire team.”
Several players had to perform in the absence of a few players who suffered what Cotter called some “nicks and dings.”
Green replaced Mason Cushman in the offensive backfield and rushed for 218 yards on 14 carries.
He led the Panthers as they picked up a whopping 412 yards on the ground in 42 carries.
Wilhelm played quarterback and in the defensive secondary all night after an injury to Ethan Kise.
“Trey Good was a warrior tonight and our offensive and defensive lines were fantastic,” said Cotter. “I couldn’t have asked for better from my team.”
The Panthers will host Springfield Catholic Central for Homecoming on Friday.
Triad slipped to 1-3 on the season with a 37-6 loss to Greeneview.
The Cardinals’ lone touchdown came in the first period.
The Rams held a 14-6 margin at the end of the opening period and took a 30-6 lead into halftime.
Greeneview tacked on its final touchdown in the third period.
Triad had trouble running the ball as Jacob Jenkins led in the backfield with just 11 yards.
Quarterback Jordan Simonelli passed for 92 yards, 59 of which went to Logan McCoy.
The Cardinals will travel to Southeastern on Friday.
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