By Frank Gorey
Ashburn (August 29, 2016) – For ten years and eight straight games, Potomac Falls High School had lost varsity football games to perennial powerhouse Broad Run High School, but all of that changed on August 26 as new Panthers head coach Paul Barnes won his inaugural game, 16-10, to kick off the 2016 high school football season.
The Panthers took advantage of an early Broad Run fumble when Potomac Falls quarterback Hunter Lawall found receiver Kaevon Chase open in the right corner of the end zone for a 27-yard touchdown midway through the first quarter.
On the following possession, the Spartans were able to once again march into Panther territory before yet another fumble ended their drive.
After the teams traded punts, Panthers’ running back Kash Jackson – who carried the ball 13 times for 112 yards – broke free for a 39-yard gain before Potomac Falls settled for a 23-yard field goal by kicker Alex Nemer.
However, the Spartans finally struck back.
Shortly after his own 28-yard run, Broad Run running back Meech Hembry – who carried the ball 25 times for 234 yards – was able to punch it in from 11 yards out.
However, whatever momentum the Spartans had gained was quickly lost when with just minutes left in the first half – following a pass interference call against the Spartans – Jackson found the corner on a sweep and scored from 33 yards away to give the Panthers a 16-7 halftime lead.
With just under five minutes left in the game, the Spartans took over on their own 27-yard line when Hembry was somehow able to elude a host of Panther defenders on a 4th-and-9 from his own 37 to keep the drive alive.
Four straight carries by Spartan running back Corey Phillips – who carried the ball 21 times for 114 yards – moved the ball to the Panther 35-yard line. A personal foul by Potomac Falls following a Hembry reception as time expired meant Broad Run had one final chance from the Panthers’ 5-yard line.
Hembry rolled right and made a dash for the end zone, but when it became clear to him that the Potomac Falls defense would stop him short, he flipped a shovel pass into the end zone. The pass attempt fell just short as the Panthers stormed the field victorious.
The Panthers hope to continue their winning ways on September 2 as they travel to crosstown rival Dominion, while the Spartans – who lost their first game of the season under Griffis for the first time – look to rebound against Wakefield High School from Arlington.
1Q 4:09 PF Hunter Lawall to Kaevon Chase 27-yard TD pass (Nemer PAT)
2Q 5:30 PF Alex Nemer 23-yard FG
2Q 3:25 BR Meech Hembery 11-yard TD run (Buri PAT)
2Q 1:22 PF Kash Jackson 33-yard TD run (PAT failed)
3Q 0:00 BR Attila Buri 21-yard FG
LoCoSports Editor-in-Chief Owen Gotimer contributed to this story.