Paint Branch Football Defeats Consortium Rival in a Thriller

Abrahim Karzai, Staff Writer

If a game ever deserved the word “Amazing” it would be Thursday evening’s battle between Paint Branch and Springbrook.

In an epic matchup, the Panthers defeated the Springbrook Blue Devils by a score of 28-25 in a game that saw Paint Branch surrender a two-possession lead before the half, only to bounce back in the second half to win.

This game had it all.

Paint Branch started off strong, sprinting out to a 13-0 lead in the second quarter on touchdowns from wide receiver Dhedhus Anumgba on a 49-yard catch, and a 13-yarder from receiver Ishmael Agedzah. The lead was short-lived, as Springbrook scored two late touchdowns and a safety off a bad snap on a punt to take a 16-13 lead going into half.

PB wasn’t going down easy, however. A 32-yard run by sophomore Samuel Doku paved the way to find the end zone on a 15 yard run one play later. Doku recaptured the lead for the Panthers in the third quarter, 20-16.

Springbrook would get the lead right back in the fourth thanks to a TD drive led by Springbrook senior quarterback Trevon Ruffin. The Blue Devils extended their lead after another bad snap on a punt by the Panthers led to two more points for Springbrook for a 25-20 lead.

However, with just over three minutes left on the clock, the Panthers were still alive.

Junior quarterback Norman Douglas took the Panthers on a long drive that saw Paint Branch convert a long 4th down, thanks to a pass interference call on Springbrook. PB would face more adversity on the drive, but they answered.

With the Panthers facing a second 4th and long on the drive, senior receiver Anumgba caught a pass after the ball was tipped up in the air off the hands of another PB receiver.  Anumgba’s concentration was the key on this incredibly wacky play.

Then, with just 36 seconds to go, Douglas threw the game-winning score to junior receiver Agedzah in the corner of the end zone.

With just thirty-six seconds on the clock, all that was left was for the Panther D to hold. And hold they did. Senior defensive back Dejuan Johnson clinched the game with an interception as time expired to give PB an emotional and gut-wrenching win against a bitter rival.

The Panthers, now 5-0,  face a challenge on Friday as they hit the road to face 4-1 Quince Orchard in a tough matchup. Panthers junior defensive lineman Yesh Joshi simply stated that this game is “going to be a war.”

As for Springbrook, they fall to 3-2 and will host Wootton.