The Fort Stockton Panthers came to town on Sept. 4 for Alpine High School’s home opener. The game was played at the Sul Ross State University Jackson Field to host more fans and still be able to social distance.
The Bucks’ first home game seemed to pick up where last week’s left off where the Panthers scored twice in the last four minutes to grab the win in Fort Stockton. The Bucks were off balance in the first half, and seemed to be playing on their heels for much of the time. The Panthers moved the ball at will, and kept attacking the Bucks with long passes, big catches, and pass interference calls.
Toward the end of the second half, the Bucks found themselves down 0-14, and reeling after a Panther interception and eventual touchdown drive. Alpine stalled on the next drive, and once again, the Panther offense was rolling. Coach John Fellows called a time out with 1:36 to go in the half. This turned out to be a great decision for the Bucks, as the defense caught their breath. They held the Panthers out of the end zone going into the half, and shut down the high-powered Panther offense for the rest of the game.
Said senior Brady Crump, “The highlight of Friday night’s game was definitely working as a team to come back and win. We would not have been able to do it without each other.”
Then, in the second half, the Bucks came out a totally different team. The offense put together three drives, two of which were from inside the Buck five-yard line.
Junior cornerback Aiden Morrissey said of the team effort, “We fought for 48 minutes. From all the injuries, being down 14 at half, getting pinned within the five twice and scoring, including the 99-yard game winning drive, showed what a Fightin’ Buck is all about.”
The final drive ended with junior quarterback Jayden Canaba finding the end zone to take the first and final lead of the game with just 1:02 left for the 20-14 win.
An excited Canaba said, “I am really proud of our team for stepping it up after our first half performance, and making things happen the second half. It was a great win for our team. We never gave up.”
Alpine will travel to Wink on Friday, Sept. 11, to face a tough Wildcat team.