Words can’t describe what ensued at Webster County Friday evening. The CCHS Panther football team, with tons of hope behind them this year to be one of the best teams in the state, went head to head against the bad to the bone Webster team. I thought, “Well, it is a scrimmage, grab a hotdog and settle down for a lazy evening.” That was a mistake. To the 80 plus players on both sides of the grid iron, this was a war; it was not for the faint at heart or the squeamish.
The grid became a hitting field much like the Roman Coliseum without the final death involved. It was no place for jokes and certainly no place for laziness. The boys were focused on one thing and that was a win, and winning wasn’t just about the score, but about who was meaner, faster, tougher, and who would walk off the field king of the beast war.
It was the Panthers’ rite of passage for this year. Bone crushing hits could be heard within a hundred yards in any direction. This preseason game was the Super Bowl of tough guys, and the Panthers gave new meaning to tough. The running game of the Panthers, of course, will naturally be hard to get a hold of and stop. The defense will be after the ball all this season, as Webster found out. After they work out a couple of bugs this week before the season opener with Roane County, the defense will be where they need to be.
The JV team came on the field in the fourth quarter, and they looked like a tsunami hitting a coastline. There can’t be enough said about this year’s Panther team. You just have to show up to a game and find out for yourself. It is football time in this county so put on the colors and be proud you’re a Panther fan because the team will be bringing their A game. Let’s see, gear for fan pack: face paint, bleacher seat, band aids, money for concessions, boxing gloves, old busted helmet in case you’re called out of retirement, Rolaids, umbrella, aspirin, and, of course, your camera to record history in the making. Good luck Panthers!