If you looked at the stats, you would think this district rivalry game was close. The scoreboard indicated otherwise.
Arlington Martin (4-1, 3-0) routed Paschal 66-20 Friday night to extend the Panthers’ losing streak to three.
The Warriors were led by consistency from quarterback Eric Walker, who went 11-for-16 for 174 yards and two TD’s. Nine different runners combined for 281 yards on the ground and accounted for three more scores.
For Paschal, sophomore quarterback Dylan Thomas was 13-for-28 and threw for 244 yards and two scores. He also led the team in rushing with 63 yards and a TD.
Martin only out-gained the Panthers by just over 100 yards, but capitalized on big plays from the offense, defense, and special teams to break the game wide open.
Martin started the game with a safety on the opening kickoff and added a touchdown on the ensuing drive. Just like last week, though, Paschal kept it close early, as Thomas found a wide open Darrell James for a 2-yard touchdown to cut the lead to 9-6. However, Myles Garrett blocked the extra point and returned it for another two points for Martin to extend the lead to 11-6.
The Warriors scored on their next drive, but Paschal once again answered with a 54 yard connection from Thomas to James. The Panthers went for two and converted, cutting the lead to 18-14.
After that, Martin pulled away.
Four drives resulted in four touchdowns for the Warriors, and on the other side, Paschal was forced to punt each drive. Martin added a touchdown return off a blocked punt before halftime, and suddenly the Panthers found themselves down 53-14 at the break.
“It seemed like déjà vu all over again,” fan Jon Langston said. “They let it get away from them last week and again this week.”
In the second half, Thomas ran for a score for Paschal but the Panthers allowed a touchdown return on their only turnover of the game.
“I thought we played better than last week, but we still need to get better and it starts with me,” Thomas said. “We’ll prepare for next week and hopefully get a win.”
Head coach Matt Cook wasn’t disappointed with his team’s performance.
“We have to keep our heads high because they [Martin] are one of the best teams around,” Cook said.
Next week for Paschal comes the Weatherford Kangaroos (0-6, 0-3), who lost convincingly on Friday to Arlington, 65-0.