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Friday’s Clarence Cannon Conference football game between Clark County and Palmrya will long be remembered by fans for its dramatic finish. But before the final minutes, the two teams fought a hard defensive game.
Clark County won the coin toss, and chose to receive. Palmyra was flagged for interfering with the receiver after a short kick, and Clark County started with excellent field position at the Panther 43 yard line. The powerful Palmyra defense held their ground, and Layne Sommers punted for Clark County.
The Panthers, led by Brody Lehenbauer, went on the attack, quickly moving to midfield before losing the ball on a fumble.
The Indians picked up a big first down on a run by Kenny Harrell, and then two more as they drove inside the Panther twenty before being stopped, and turning the ball over on downs.
Palmyra couldn’t move against the Big Red defense, and punted.
Clark County started their possession near midfield, and were pushed backwards before punting.
The Panthers started their next drive on their own 19 yard line. A long third and ten pass to Hayes Miller moved Palmyra into Indian territory. The Panthers would score first on a pass to Peyton Timbrook with 8:59 left in the second quarter. The extra point kick missed, an Palmyra led 6-0.
On the next possession, it was the Indians’ turn to gain a lot of ground on a pass play, as Sam Wheeler connected with Justin Webster for a 31 yard gain. Wheeler would later get sacked to stall the drive, and Clark County turned the ball over on downs.
Bode James made a big play, blocking a Lehenbauer pass on the next possession, and Palmyra turned the ball over, but Clark County couldn’t move the ball and punted.
The Panthers added to their lead, scoring on a one yard run by Lehenbauer with just 21 seconds remaining in the half. The two point attempt failed, and Palmyra led 12-0 at the half.
The second half started with a Lehenbauer being sacked by James, and Palmyra punted their possession away.
The Indians gained a first down, then took a shot at a long pass to the end zone. Unfortunately, Palmyra intercepted.
Back and forth went the defensive fight until Clark County got some momentum late in the third, driving 79 yards, capped by a 37 yard touchdown pass to Sommers with 1:10 remaining in the third quarter. The two point attempt failed, and the score stood at 12-6.
The Indians put together another scoring drive late in the game, moving the ball 81 yards in ten plays to score on a 21 yard pass to Sommers. The two point conversion was good, and with just 1:09 remaining, Clark County took a 14-12 lead.
Two big Palmrya plays in the final minute moved the Panthers up the field. Clark County’s defense stopped the Panthers at the 17 yard line, but Palmyra kick a 32 yard field goal with just 12 seconds remaining to take a 15-14 win.
The Indians weren’t through, however. Several lateral throws were successful on the kickoff, and Clark County almost was successful in breaking for the runback. After a wild last minute of play, top-ranked Palmyra survived unbeaten with a 15-14 win.
The Indians had 265 total yards, and allowed only 288 for the visiting Panthers. Wheeler was 12 of 21 for 154 yards passing. Wheeler also led the rushing, with 66 yards, most of them in the second half.
The Indians travel to Brookfield on Friday night to take on the Bulldogs.
Watch the game LIVE on the NEMOnews.net Facebook page.