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Central Noble gridders down Prairie Heights

A disastrous third quarter helped send the Prairie Heights Panthers to their fourth defeat of the football season last Friday at Central Noble.

The host Cougars converted four Prairie Heights turnovers in the third frame into 21 points, turning a slim, 7-6 halftime advantage into a 28-6 margin. Central Noble went on to post a 34-12 victory over the Panthers to raise its season record to 3-1.

Ellie Cole’s second-half kickoff proved to be too hot to handle for the Panthers, as Cougar teammate Zach Brazel recovered the ball at the Heights 21. On the next play, speedster Breeon Burgess weaved his way through the Panther defense for a 21-yard touchdown run.

Prairie Heights held on to ensuing kickoff and quickly moved into CN territory on a 42-yard pass play from Ethan Hoover to Ryan Rasler. But two snaps later, the Panthers coughed up the ball again.

The Cougars took over on their own 21 and marched 79 yards to paydirt. Braxton Dial capped the long drive with a four-yard touchdown burst.

Central Noble got the ball back a few seconds later when Prairie Heights again failed to field Cole’s bouncing kickoff. Burgess bolted 41 yards to the end zone on the next play to give the Cougars a 28-6 lead.

The final Panther offensive possession of the third quarter ended in an interception. Central Noble would cash in the mistake two minutes into the fourth period on a 10-yard scoring run by Dial.

Panther halfback Lucas Waite dashed 10 yards to the end zone late in the fourth period to tally the game’s final six points.

Prairie Heights took its first lead of the season minutes into the first quarter on a 24-yard pass from Hoover to Louie Fraley. The score was set up when Kolton Handshoe recovered a Central Noble fumble on the opening kickoff.

The Panther lead lasted until the 2:36 mark of the first period when Dial crashed over the goalline from the one to net the first of his three touchdowns. Erika Maneke tacked on the PAT kick to put the hosts in front, 7-6.

Fraley gained 61 yards on 16 carries to pace the Heights rushing attack. Hoover completed six passes covering 119 yards.

The 0-4 Panthers entertain 4-0 Churubusco this Friday in an NECC Small School Division clash. The Eagles whipped Eastside, 28-9 last Friday.

GAME SUMMARY

Central Noble 34

Prairie Heights 12

Scoring by quarters

    PH    6    0    0    6    -12

    CN    7    0   21   6    -34

First Quarter

PH—Louie Fraley 24-yard pass from Ethan Hoover, conversion failed

CN—Braxton Dial one-yard run, Erika Maneke kick

Second Quarter

No scoring

Third Quarter

CN—Breeon Burgess 21-yard run, Maneke kick

CN—Dial four-yard run, conversion failed

CN—Burgess 41-yard run, Nick Rawles conversion pass from Nick Alwine

Fourth Quarter

CN—Dial 10-yard run, conversion failed

PH—Lucas Waite 10-yard run, conversion failed