By Shannon J. Allen/Sand Mountain Reporter
No. 8 Lanett ran 12 plays in the first half against West End Last Friday (Nov. 11), and six of them went for touchdowns.
The Panthers’ first-half explosion propelled them to a 53-14 victory in a Class 2A second-round playoff game in Walnut Grove.
Lanett (10-2) will face No. 4 Tanner (9-3) in the state quarterfinals this Friday (Nov. 18). The Patriots finished their season at 6-6.
The Panthers actually had 15 snaps in the opening half, but three of them were wiped out by penalties, including a pair of holding calls that erased 80- and 63-yard touchdown sprints by Terrion Truitt.
Lanett senior quarterback Tre Story finished 4-of-7 passing for 154 yards and three scores. He rushed seven times for 148 yards and three TDs.
Tre Story was lifted in favor of his brother Kristian following Lanett’s third series of the second half.
Melvaunta Robinson took a handoff 89 yards to the end zone on Lanett’s first offensive play with 7:17 left in the opening period. West End’s Dewayne Miller blocked the extra point.
The Patriots failed to convert a fake punt by one yard, and Lanett took over on West End’s 40-yard line. Two plays later, Tre Story ran a keeper 38 yards for a touchdown with 4:11 remaining, making it 13-0.
Lanett’s fourth offensive snap saw Truitt shake free in the backfield and dash 59 yards for a TD with 1:08 to go. The extra point was wide left but the Panthers led 19-0.
Kristian Story’s interception set up Truitt’s score. The Panthers picked off five passes on the night, including three by Trikweze Bridges.
Bridges’ first interception led to Lanett’s next score, a 92-yard run by Tre Story at the 11:04 mark of the second period. Story’s run followed a holding penalty that negated Truitt’s 80-yard TD.
Following a West End punt, Truitt raced 63 yards to the end zone, but it was wiped out by a holding call. Two plays later, Tre Story fired a 74-yard TD pass to Jatavious Barrow. The point-after gave Lanett a 33-0 cushion.
Andre Little’s 62-yard kickoff return put West End’s offense in business at the Lanett 36, and Jordan Malin scored on an 11-yard run with 4:36 remaining in the second quarter, cutting it to 33-6. The two-point conversion failed.
Lanett recovered the ensuing onside kick at West End’s 48 and scored in three plays. Tre Story capped the drive with a 20-yard touchdown pass to Anquaevious Pollard with 3:32 on the clock, making it 40-6.
Robinson picked off a pass on West End’s first snap of the second half and returned it 34 yards for a touchdown, but the score was erased by a holding penalty. Lanett’s offense then turned it over on downs at the Patriot 20.
Tre Story’s 45-yard scoring pass to Kristian Story was wiped out by an illegal touching penalty on Lanett’s next offensive play. But two plays later, Tre Story found Pollard for a 45-yard touchdown pass, extending Lanett’s margin to 47-6 with 5:16 remaining in the third period.
Tre Story returned at quarterback for the first two snaps of the fourth quarter, which came inside West End’s 10. On the second one, he powered his way into the end zone on a 2-yard sneak with 11:38 left in the game. Little blocked the PAT, but the Panthers led 53-6.
West End quarterback Payne Stancil threw a 13-yard touchdown pass to Little with 31.3 seconds to go. Stancil ran for two points, making the final margin 53-14.
Little turned a fantastic leaping catch into a 39-yard gain to set up his scoring pass from Stancil.
Stancil completed 17-of-30 passes for 225 yards. Little finished with 12 receptions for 151 yards.
Malin rushed 19 times for 85 yards, while Gage Lankford caught four passes for 56 yards.