THORNVILLE — After a slow-fighting first half, the Sheridan Generals found their power to dominate the Maysville Panthers in the second half to take the 21-0 victory last Friday.
During the first quarter, Sheridan kept possession from kickoff until a little less than six minutes of play before Maysville completed the quarter with possession.
Sheridan’s series of plays were small runs through the middle, as Nate Johnson at quarterback would alternate his handoffs to Jason Munyan and Will Hamilton.
Sheridan’s defense held strong to allow the Panthers to make it only to Sheridan’s 25-yard line before time ran out.
The Panthers started the second quarter with possession and without much of a break between quarters.
After two and a half minutes of the second, Maysville attempted a long passing play, but it backfired on them when Shay Taylor grabbed the interception at the nine-yard line.
Johnson took the next play in his own hands as he gained 17 yards during his keep to gain a first down.
After Sheridan made it to the 47-yard line, the Panthers gained possession by the rollover of downs.
With less than a minute of the half, Maysville made it to the red zone, and it seemed as they were going to be the first ones to break the no score, but Sheridan’s Taylor deemed them unworthy as he found himself in the backfield on second and goal for a sack to end the half and hold Maysville scoreless at the three-yard line.
The Generals fought from the second Alec Ogle returned the punt the second half, and after gaining five first downs in their series of plays to start the third quarter, Johnson found himself keeping possession as he crossed into the end zone for Sheridan’s first touchdown at a 7:59 time.
The extra point was good and the Generals had the first lead of the game.
Maysville’s possession lasted seven minutes before Sheridan claimed possession again with a minute remaining, but they managed two downs in that minute.
The Generals began the final quarter with Johnson carrying wide and to the left to gain 12 yards.
After a few penalties against the Generals, they were third and 16, and it seemed Maysville was going to have a long possession.
From the 23-yard line, Johnson passed through the middle to Logan Ranft who made it to Maysville’s 34-yard line.
Then a pass from Johnson to Landen Russell was going to be another touchdown, but no surprise, a flag was thrown against Sheridan.
The Generals gained their first down, but not the six points, at least not until they found themselves at the 25-yard line and Johnson gave the ball to Hamilton who gained one yard through the middle for a first down.
From the 24-yard line, Johnson’s throw to Ranft was found in the left corner of the end zone as Ranft showed his skill with his one-handed grabs again.
Ranft completed the PAT afterward to put his Generals up 14-0 with 8:40 left of the game.
The Panthers answered with a 36-yard passing play to gain yardage in their possession, right off the bat.
It did not work entirely well as Maysville fumbled and Sheridan’s Logan Morris recovered for another Generals’ possession.
It proved assisting as Sheridan found another touchdown with less than four minutes left of play.
Johnson took the scoring into his own hands again as he broke through the line to find his end zone and put Sheridan up 20-0.
Ranft’s kick found the middle again and completed Sheridan’s scoring at 21-0.
According to Sheridan head coach Paul Culver III, Maysville had a strong offense, and he knew his defense was going to need to step up.
“Their offense is in its purest form and they’re going to block everyone on defense,” he stated.
“We had to be more physical and more tough.”
“We showed that in the second half and I was very proud of us.”
The Generals had to come to the field bleeding confidence against Maysville after a tough loss in week one to Licking Valley.
Culver III said it was a cliché, but he told his boys to play not to lose.
“We questioned ourselves this week after that loss, but we are now seeing how everything is coming together,” he reported.
“Johnson is slowly, but surely finding himself and our offense is becoming full.”
“I believe in our kids.”