Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Area Sports

August 26, 2013

Panthers edge Livingston 6-5

CROSSVILLE — On Friday night the Stone Memorial Panthers kicked off their 2013 season at home against the Livingston Academy Wildcats, with what Coach Mark Wattenbarger has deemed as perhaps the youngest squad he has coached in his 15-plus years of coaching and came away with a 6-5 victory.

As the Panthers took the field, running behind the Harley Davidson, it was obvious the well-manicured field had taken on a lot of rain from earlier in the evening.

Stone who is beginning this season in a new district —District  6AAA, welcomed a great crowd to witness this first contest of the 2013 campaign.

The Panthers won the coin toss and elected to receive in what turned out to be a great decision. After the kickoff, they began the first drive of this season on the 31-yard line. It didn't take long for senior quarterback Brady Wattenbarger to connect on a 55-yard pass play to fellow senior Brian Frye to the Wildcat three. Sophomore Justin Johnson took it in for the first touchdown of the season.

In just 3:45 Stone was on the board, the PAT was no good so the lead was 6-0 in what would be a very important touchdown.

Livingston began their opening drive on their own 47-yard line. Livingston would

move the ball and on fourth and four, they would convert keeping their drive alive. The drive stalled, when on third and seven, a receiver caught a pass in the end zone and was ruled out of bounds, as he was not able to get his foot down.

Senior Eli Sadler would attempt a 35-yard field goal that missed left. The Panthers' next drive ended with a punt from Wattenbarger with 1:47 left in the first quarter. The Wildcats started their second drive, by going to the air, in an indication of things to come.

Livingston drove all the way to Stone's one-yard line, when the Panther defense came

up with the biggest play of  the game, as sophomore Anthony Conley recovered a fumble on the three-yard line.

Stone tried to get some room to work, but on second down Wattenbarger was sacked in the end zone for a safety. There was a clock malfunction with time  kept on the field until it was repaired at the half.

After the Panthers' free kick, the Wildcats once again had great field position, starting at the Panther 49-yard line. After moving the ball,  junior quarterback Caleb Qualls found his go-to receiver junior Wade Eldridge on third and six for a first down. On second down, senior Seth Seiber tackled a Wildcat for a loss to bring up a third and nine. Qualls' pass fell incomplete. Sadler converted a 37-yard goal to make the score 6-5, Panthers.

Stone put together a nice drive, keyed by a 34-yard completion from Wattenbarger to Frye, but on fourth and two, they turned the ball over on downs with a few seconds left in the half.

Livingston received the ball to start the second half and moved the ball, powered by the Qualls to Eldridge connection; however, on third and 13, the Panther defense rose to the occasion, as sophomore defensive back Chandler VanNatter broke up a pass, forcing a punt.

The Panther drive stalled, and after two penalties, they faced a third and 19, when the ball slipped out of Wattenbarger's hand, forcing him to punt, which was downed on the two-yard line.

Qualls went to work, mostly on passes to his tight end Eldridge, but freshman Blake Hicks intercepted a Qualls pass for the Panther defense to thwart another Wildcat drive.

Stone couldn't do much with the ball and punted again to end the third quarter.

As the fourth quarter started, Qualls and Eldridge teamed up for a 40-yard gain, but on third and 10, junior Cole McDaniel sacked Qualls for another big defensive play for the Panthers to bring up fourth and 16.

With 7:30 left in the game, Sadler attempted a 37-yard field goal which was wide right.

After a possession change, Livingston moved the ball, but on fourth and five, Qualls

threw an incomplete pass which gave the ball back to the Panthers with 2:46 left in the contest.

Stone gained some yards to burn some clock before Wattenbarger again boomed another punt of 56 yards.

With no timeouts and 1:13 left on the clock, Livingston tried to get into field goal range. On second and 10, a recurring theme of the night, Stone's defense came up big, recovering a fumble with only 20 ticks left.

All that was needed to secure the victory for the Panthers was Wattenbarger to take a knee in the victory formation, much to the delight of the many fans cheering them on. It has been said, "football is a game of inches," which we know to be true, but it is also a game where players have to make plays and on Friday night Stone made enough  plays to gain their first win in their first game of this season.

This Friday Stone will be hosting DeKalb County at Panther Stadium looking to go to 2-0.

1
Text Only
Area Sports
  • overall.jpg Clay Crushers host Server Shoot-on-the-Mountain

    The third annual Doug Server Shoot-On-The–Mountain was held April 5 at the Sportsman Club on Shorty Barnes Rd.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • OH GOOD GRIEF: Martin out as Vol hoop coach

    The University of Tennessee's beleaguered head basketball coach, Cuonzo Martin is gone. Martin resigned Tuesday to become the head coach at the University of California, which won the 2010 PAC-10 championship under retiring coach Mike Montgomery.

    April 17, 2014

  • Ledbetter pitches Jets over Cookeville

    The CCHS Jets picked up a big district win over the visiting Cookeville Cavaliers Wednesday night by a final score of 8-4 to improve to 14-8 overall.

    April 17, 2014

  • Panthers lose to Rhea County

    The Stone Memorial  Panther baseball team dropped a make-up game at Rhea County Wednesday evening 6-2.

    April 17, 2014

  • Lady Jets win Plateau Classic

    The Cumberland County High School Lady Jet softball team won the annual Plateau Classic played over the weekend at Crossville Centennial Park.

    April 17, 2014

  • Jets shut out 7-0 by Cookeville Monday

    The Cookeville Cavaliers scored seven runs in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings to claim a 7-0 District 6AAA victory over the CCHS Jets Monday night in Cookeville.

    April 15, 2014

  • Panthers shut out Rhea County

    On a wet Monday afternoon, the Stone Memorial baseball team  hosted Rhea County in a District 6AAA match-up to claim a 10-0 win in the first game of the home-and-home series.

    April 15, 2014

  • SMHS track teams compete at Tennessee Relays

    The SMHS Lady Panthers had another stellar day while the Panthers hammered out a solid day in Knoxville in the Tennessee Relays over the weekend.. The Lady Panthers finished ninth out of the 57 scheduled teams to compete, while the boys took 32nd out of the 57.

    April 15, 2014

  • SMHS tennis team loses twice to Rhea County

    The Stone Memorial tennis teams lost their District 6AAA matches to Rhea County Monday afternoon. The boys lost 9-0, while the girls were beaten 7-2.

    April 15, 2014

  • CRYSA registration is going online

    Registration for CRYSA's Fall 2014 season can be done on online at www.tn-crysa.affinitysoccer.com.

    April 15, 2014

Marketplace Marquee
Must Read
Section Teases
Seasonal Content
Parade
AP Video
Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Weather Radar