Pelham takes come-from-behind victory over Walker
By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor
PELHAM – The Pelham Panther defense held the visiting Walker Vikings scoreless in the second half to take a 24-21 victory and their first region win of the season on Sept. 19.
Turnovers plagued the Panthers (2-2, 1-2 in Class 6A Region 5) early in the game, and put them in a 21-7 hole midway through the second quarter before Pelham reeled off 17 unanswered points to take the victory.
“What a super job by the defense shutting them out in the second half,” Pelham head coach Brett Burnett said. “I’m proud of our win. It was a great win for our school.”
Pelham senior running back Moregan Sharp went down with an injury late in the second quarter, giving RJ McCall Giovanny Adan and Tyler Wilburn plenty of carries in the second half.
“Tyler Wilburn and all the other guys stepped in and did a super job for us,” Burnett said. “Those kids were playing on both sides of the ball, and I’m proud of them.”
Sharp was the rushing leader for the Panthers in the game, recording 112 yards on 20 carries, followed by Adan with 56 yards on 13 carries. Defensive leaders for Pelham were Jeremy Ross and Auston London with seven tackles apiece and Jon Drake with six tackles.
Walker jumped out to a 7-0 lead late in the first quarter, but Pelham answered on a 12-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Logan Burnett to Sharp and Austin Bowen PAT to tie the game at 7-all going into the second quarter.
The Vikings added a pair of touchdowns in the second quarter – one of which came after a high snap sailed over Bowen’s head and was recovered by Walker in the Pelham end zone.
The Panthers closed the gap to 21-14 going into halftime when Logan Burnett snuck the ball in from one yard out, followed by an Adan PAT.
McCall tied the game at 21-all late in the third quarter on a 4-yard touchdown run, followed by a Bowen extra point. Bowen tacked on a 33-yard game-winning field goal with five minutes left in the game.
Drake recovered a Viking fumble at the Walker 33-yard line with less than four minutes left in the game before Pelham drove it to the Walker 1-yard line and kneed it for the victory.