Carolina Forest knocks off Conway in defensive duel

Conway’s defense slowed down Carolina Forest Thursday night, but the Tigers couldn’t muster enough offense to match the Panthers.

Carolina Forest (6-1, 3-1 region) defeated their rivals 20-7 in a game that featured a few big plays and lots of stout defense. For the Panthers, the victory was a morale boost after last week’s tough loss to West Florence.

“The beauty of high school football is kind of watching kids grow up and deal with adversity,” Carolina Forest coach Marc Morris said. “Last week was not a good week for our defense, but just watching them work this week and watching their confidence grow every day during practice [was encouraging]. We thought we had a pretty good game plan against them, and they executed and did a good job tonight.”

Conway and Carolina Forest traded touchdowns early before the Tigers drove deep into Panther territory. Carolina Forest’s defense held strong, though, and after forcing a turnover on downs the Panthers got a long touchdown run from David Leggette to put Carolina Forest ahead 14-7.

That score would hold through halftime. 

About four minutes into the third quarter, the Panthers added to their lead when quarterback Mason Garcia hit wideout Jackson Weatherwax for a deep score. Those would be the only points of the second half as the defenses continued to force punts.

“We started off fired up, but towards the end we slowed down a little bit,” Garcia said. “The defense stepped up and helped us out.”

Photo by Chuck Silvey

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