The Panthers traveled two and a half hours Southeast to Elberton, Georgia to take on the Blue Devils of Elbert Friday night. Union had one goal in mind and that was to go down and get a win to keep their Region Championship hopes in reach. Elbert County had the same mindset so you should not have expected anything else but a barn burner. A fun fact about Elbert County is it is the home to standout Georgia Bulldogs Wideout, Mecole Hardman.
During warmups you could tell this was going to be a game for the ages. The game started out very sloppy for both teams but the intensity and effort was very evident. The Panthers could not get it rolling on Offense, but the Defense led by Chayton Schafer was picking up any slack to hold the Devils scoreless in the first quart. However, on the flip side the Blue Devils was doing the same thing so the first would end 0-0. The second quarter is when the Offense for Union would start clicking when Pierson Allison led them a on a drive ending in a 22 yard pass to Chayton Schafer. This would not go unmatched by the Blue Devils. Elbert would throw a quick pass to Metrius Fleming and he would do the rest taking it 69 yards for a touchdown, they would miss the extra point though. Kyle Morlock would extend the lead to 14-6 going into to halftime on a 22 yard touchdown reception from Allison.
The second half is when you could see that this game meant a lot to both of these teams. The 3rd quarter would be all Blue Devils. Elbert would rush for a 27 yard touch down and go for a two point conversion to tie the game back up then they would take the lead on 9 yard kick bringing the score to 21-14 in favor of Elbert going into the 4th quarter. The Panthers would march down the field and score of a 2 yard rushing touchdown by Chad Buzzard, but just like most of the night the Devils would respond with a 12 yard rushing touchdown to bring them ahead 28-21 with a little over 3 minutes left in the game. Pierson would march the Panthers down the field and hand Buzzard the ball from 1 yard out to give the Panthers a score bringing it to 27-28 with 1 minute and 30 seconds left in the game. At this point head coach, Brian Allison, had the choice to kick the extra point to tie or go for two to put the Panthers a head. With everyone of their feet and the Panthers jogging out to go for two to win the game the Blue Devils would call a time out. After the timeout they took the field to go ahead in this game and that’s exactly what happened. Union Ran a reverse to Sawyer Drake and with the help of a huge block by Pierson he would sneak in. Elbert still had time they would march down the field and with 9 seconds left would go for the deep ball, but Junior Safety, John Mancuso was not having it. John would pick the ball and help secure Unions quest for the Region Championship alive. Congrats to Brian Allison and the Union County Panthers.
For region, standings click HERE!
It is like deja vu, but when you put up numbers like the Junior signal caller is it is hard not to keep selecting him for Player of the week. Pierson was on fire again Friday night doing what ever he could to help prevail the Panthers to a victory, including a huge block for the Panthers on a 2-point conversion. Pierson was 28/41 for 400 passing yards and two touchdowns, but he also rushed for 70 more. Congrats to the Panthers on another huge win!