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Panthers too much, rumble to 35

Panthers too much, rumble to 35-13 win

EUGENE

-- This time there was no second-half collapse.

Two weeks ago, South Medford led Klamath Union 17-0 at halftime and lost 18-17 as victory escaped the Panthers.

South led 7-0 at halftime and pulled away with four second-half touchdowns Friday night as the Panthers notched their first victory of the season with a 35-13 victory over North Eugene at Autzen Stadium.

Jeremy Boyd rambled for 28 carries, 176 yards and two touchdowns for the Panthers, who snapped a nine-game losing streak. South's last win came when it defeated Klamath Union, 41-13, Oct. 23, 1998 at Spiegelberg Stadium.

There were two very similar teams trying to win a ball game, South coach Bill Singler said. They only have six seniors and we only have six seniors. We just happened to execute a little better than they did and make some big plays, which we haven't made this year. So we got some longer touchdowns than we have all year.

Junior quarterback Jon McKay connected on 8 of 14 passes for 157 yards and three touchdowns.

The Panthers lost the ball twice on downs and punted once before McKay and Bjorn Johnson linked up on a 45-yard scoring play with 3:56 left in the half.

South scored twice more in the third period -- a 60-yard McKay to Jimmie Maddox pass and a 75-yard, six-play drive featuring Boyd that gave the Panthers a 21-0 advantage after Jared Mulhollen's third PAT kick.

North Eugene's Justin Wrightman connected on 10 of 26 passes for 175 yards. But South Medford bottled up the Highlanders' ground game, allowing only 34 yards on 29 attempts.

Linemen Brian McCarthy, Adam Dendauw, Cameron Gallop and Boomer Marshall were the mainstays in the defensive effort.

On offense, Scott McLain, Jacob Villa, Aaron Orosco, Ricardo Valdez John Wickre and Justin Towry opened up holes and bought time for McKay.

These kids deserved to win a football game, Singler said. We weren't going to go the whole season without a win.

South more than tripled its scoring average of 10 points per game and doubled its previous high output of 17 points against Klamath Union.

The kids were familiar with the turf (after playing against South Eugene on Oct. 1) and it wasn't as big of a deal playing here anymore, Singler said. So we were a lot more confident.