Parkview’s Tommy Rogers scored three touchdowns, including the game-winner in overtime, and the Panthers came up with enough plays on defense to hold off Newton 42-35 in the first round of the Class AAAAAAA playoffs at the Big Orange Jungle on Friday.
Parkview (8-3) got the ball to open the first overtime and scored in four plays, with Rogers poking it in from the 2.
Newton (7-4) appeared on the verge of tying the game but the Rams were called for intentionally grounding a ball that hit an offensive lineman. The penalty left the Rams with fourth-and-goal from the 16 and they came up just short when Adarius Thomas caught a pass in the right flat and was finally dragged down at the 2 to end the game.
“It’s a real big deal for us,” linebacker Kobe Wilson said. “I love hanging out with these guys and I love keeping it going. Another week of free football is awesome.”
Parkview advances to the second round of the playoffs for the second straight year. The Panthers will host Mountain View next Friday.
“We found a way to keep it interesting,” Parkview coach Eric Godree said.
Parkview quarterback Fred Payton completed 12 of 24 passes for 190 yards and two touchdowns. Christian Malloy rushed 17 times for 171 yards and one touchdown and Rogers carried nine times for 81 yards and three scores.
Newton was led by Thomas, who rushed 32 times for 139 yards and two touchdowns. Quarterback Neal Howard completed 17 of 25 for 162 yards and one touchdown.
Parkview added to its 21-19 halftime lead by scoring on its first possession of the second half, with Payton finding Jamal Copeland for a 21-yard touchdown.
Newton used a pair of field goals from Dante Graydon, a 27-yarder and a 30-yarder, to cut the lead to 28-25, then tied the game with 4:44 left on a 29-yarder.
“With today’s offenses, people are going to score some points,” Godfree said. “But if we don’t give up touchdowns, we’ll find a way to win if we only give up field goals.”
Parkview regained the lead on a 29-yard touchdown run from Rogers, but Newton responded by driving for the tying score with 22 seconds left when Howard threw a 3-yard touchdown to Darnell Jeffries on fourth-and-goal. Newton was prepared to try a two-point conversion and go for the victory, but changed its mind after incurring a five-yard penalty for delay of game.
It looked like Parkview was on the way to a rout when it scored touchdowns on the first two possessions. Tommy Rogers ran 33 yards for the first score and Fred Payton connected with Miles Marshall for a 7-yard touchdown to complete an 11-play drive. Parkview led 14-0 with 3:36 left in the first quarter.
Newton answered with a 12-play scoring drive that was completed when Adarius Thomas punched it in from the 1. Rogers blocked the extra point, cutting Parkview’s lead to 14-6.
Parkview responded with a 73-yard touchdown drive, going ahead 21-6 on a 3-yard run by Christian Malloy.
But Newton’s Elija Goodwin returned the ensuing kickoff for a 75-yard touchdown. Goodwin fielded the kick near the sideline, made a tackler miss and was untouched, cutting Parkview’s lead to 21-13.
“That juiced them,” Godfree said. “We said we weren’t going to kick it to No. 26 and the ball made it to him somehow. It gave them the momentum.”
The Rams scored again with 1:28 left in the half on a 14-play drive that was completed when Thomas eluded a tackler and scored from the 1. The two-point conversion pass was knocked away by Ben Markiewicz and Parkview led 21-19 at halftime.