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Panthers dominate with ground game

By Davis Potter | Special to the Advertiser

It may have only been a decorated scrimmage, but Jemison’s rushing attack had the looks of being in midseason form.

The Panthers racked up 233 rushing yards on Thursday and rolled over Montevallo, 34-7, in both team’s annual jamboree at Panther Stadium.

Running back Javae Swindle led the way for the Panthers’ ground game, finishing with 94 yards on eight carries and one touchdown.

Fellow tailbacks Trahe Smith, Isa Bentley and Dustin McDaniel added to the attack, combining for 139 yards on the ground.

“We were just flat,” Montevallo coach Jamie Williams said. “(Jemison’s) got a heck of a team, and they just took it right at us.”

Bentley set the tone on the opening possession of the game. On the fourth play from scrimmage, Bentley took the handoff off the right side and raced 39 yards to give Jemison a 6-0 lead with 10:55 left in the first quarter. The touchdown run capped a 4-play, 65-yard drive.

Montevallo looked poised to draw even on its opening drive, as the Bulldogs drove the ball to the Panther 1-yard line in four plays. On third-and goal, however, the snap sailed over quarterback R.J. Scaife’s head, resulting in a turnover.

Another touchdown run – this time by Swindle – combined with a 2-yard Scott Clements touchdown pass with 2:10 left in the second frame increased the lead to 20-0 at the half.

The Bulldogs avoided the shutout when Scaife took a direct snap on fourth-and-goal and dove over the goal line for a 1-yard scoring plunge with the clock showing 59 seconds remaining in the third quarter.

Jemison also plays its first game of the season next week. The Panthers will travel to Chilton County on Aug. 26.