MIDLOTHIAN- In a rare Tuesday night game it was the Midlothian Panthers (1-2) offensive attack that stole the show in a 52-32 win over the Mineral Wells Rams (2-1) at the MISD Athletic Complex. Midlothian's offense racked up 507 total yards in the win paced by junior QB Dillon Fairbanks who threw for 329 yards and four touchdowns along with running for 76 yards and a score.
The Mineral Wells offense after a slow start put up big numbers behind sophomore Hunter McCoy who threw for 287 yards and three touchdowns, McCoy was not helped by his receivers who dropped several passes.
After a slow start for both teams Midlothian got going with Fairbanks scoring on a 12 yard run to put MHS up 7-0. The score was set up by a 33 yard run by Chase Stokes on a fake punt. After a MWHS punt, Eddie Johnson who would haul in four receptions for 176 yards scored the first of what would be three touchdowns on a 46 yard catch and run. Johnson would beat Mineral Wells DB Montel Larkin on a slant route and outrun the secondary to paydirt and a 14-0 Panthers lead after one quarter.
Mineral Wells would storm back early in the second quarter as junior WR Lorenzo Johnson would score on a 74 yard touchdown pass from McCoy. Johnson showed outstanding speed on the play outracing three Midlothian DB's to the end zone, including one who had a great angle to bring him down. Johnson would lead the way for Mineral Wells with four receptions for 128 yards. After a short Midlothian punt the Rams would strike again on a 12 yard run by sophomore Adrian Colbert and we were tied at 14.
Midlothian would extend the lead out to 28-14 before halftime as Johnson would strike again with a 56 yard touchdown reception and senior RB Brent Middleton would chip in a four yard run to give the Panthers a two score lead. After a long catch and run right before the half by Johnson for Mineral Wells the Rams had a chance to cut into the Midlothian lead but junior kicker Charles Paret would be wide left on a 41 yard field goal and at the half it was 28-14.
Midlothian early in the second half extended the lead to 31-14 on a 27 yard field goal by Dillon Wilson but Mineral Wells would soon make a game of it on the ensuing drive. On a 2nd and long play RB Gunner Pederson leaked out of the backfield and was wide open and raced down the sidelines untouched for the 62 yard touchdown catch and the lead was cut to 31-20. On the PAT junior kicker Myranda Bell had the kick blocked and recovered by Midlothian's Eric Agbaroji and returned for two points. In one of the stranger plays of the day Agbaroji's return was called back for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on Midlothian for a late hit, Bell was also called for a penalty for removing her helmet on the field.
Midlothian in what turned into a wild third quarter would score again to make it 38-20 as Johnson would strike again this time from 58 yards out. However Mineral Wells was not done as they got the final score of the quarter as Dillon Wilkins would get behind the MHS secondary scoring from 38 yards out for a 38-26 Midlothian lead.
Midlothian would extend the lead back to three scores as Fairbanks hooked up with Derrick Agbaroji from 45 yards out and a 45-26 advantage. After a Mineral Wells punt, Midlothian was unable to salt the game away and they went three and out. TaMarkus Carter would get the Rams back in the game on the ensuing punt as he'd catch the Midlothian special teams napping and pick up the bounding ball and race 75 yards to the end zone making it 45-32.
The Rams kept the momentum up as junior DB Scott Hodges would intercept a Fairbanks pass deep in MHS territory. Mineral Wells was not able to make Midlothian pay for the turnover as sophomore DE Jarmon Jackson sacked McCoy on second and ten all but ending the Rams hopes.
Midlothian added a late score on a one yard run by Victor Gonzales for the final margin of 52-32.