Macon Chronicle-Herald - Macon, MO
  • Tigers claim 1st win on GW field goal

  • The Macon Tigers varsity football team defeated the Palmyra Panthers Friday night.
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  • After losing a number of athletes from the playoff teams of the last two seasons, the Macon Tigers took their new-look team to Palmyra Friday night, looking for their first win of the 2012 season.
    This time around, the Panthers would bring back more experience at nearly all positions, including the sly Brock Butler at QB and the big fella at tight end, Bobby Gruenloh.
    Macon would win the coin-toss, but elected to kick off to the Panther offense.
    Gruenloh would take the kickoff and attempt to run it back, but was hit hard by the Macon coverage, forcing the ball loose. The Tiger linebacker C.J. Gast would pounce on it for the recovered fumble, setting Macon up nicely inside the Panther redzone.
    Just about three minutes later, the Tigers would strike on a two-yard plunge to the endzone by runner Gabe Gravitt. Andre Reynolds would tack on the extra-point, and the Tigers held a 7-0 lead.
    Palmyra would eat up about five minutes on its first drive, but would get into the Macon redzone and cash in on a six-yard run by running back Alec Bland. Back-up QB Jordan Nutt would punch through for two, and the Panthers were up 8-7.
    The Tigers would not waste much time coming back the other way.
    With less than a minute in the first quarter, Macon was once again inside the Panther 20, and senior running back Tyrone Walker would find paydirt on a 13-yard TD scamper. Reynolds would again hit the PAT, and Macon jumped ahead 14-8 after a quarter of play.
    The Tigers would have the only score of the second quarter.
    After trading possession the entire frame, Macon would hold the ball until halftime. With 14 seconds on the clock, Walker would against strike, this time from 11 yards out for the touchdown. Reynolds was good again, and Macon held a 21-8 halftime lead.
    When asked about the team's performance in the first half, Tiger head coach Pete Claas simply said: "We'll take it."
    The Panthers would shift into another gear in the second half. Their defense would stand Macon up each time, but the Tiger defense was just as stout.
    With 4:05 in the third, Palmyra would strike deep into Macon territory and score on a two-yard dash by Brock Butler.
    The Panthers attempted two again, but a false-start penalty pushed them back, forcing them to kick a PAT, which fell short. Macon would lead 21-14 heading into the fourth quarter.
    The Tiger offense would once again be snuffed out by the amped-up Palmyra "D", but Macon would stand them up in return.
    With Palmyra on the ropes in the closing minutes, Butler would complete a couple of long passes to put the Panthers in position for a score.
    Page 2 of 2 - Penalties, however would force them into 4th and long, twice.
    But both times, the Panthers would get out of trouble. The second time, on 4th and 12 from the Macon 31, Butler handed off to big man Gruenloh, who refused to go down and rumbled the 31 yards in for the score. The two-pointer would work this time, and Palmyra led 22-21 with 1:03 to go.
    Macon QB Craig Smith would go to work through the air, much like Butler did, connecting on several long passes, including a long one to Tyrone Walker, setting Macon up inside the Palmyra 20 with less than 30 seconds left.
    Another short pass put the Tigers at 1st and goal at the Panther 4 with about 10 seconds left.
    Smith took two shots at a touchdown, but both were knocked away.
    So, with 3.5 seconds left, senior kicker Andre Reynolds stepped in.
    Reynolds, who sailed wide right from 30 yards earlier, set up from 20 yards out.
    As the clock hit zeros and the scoreboard siren sounding, Reynolds' kick sailed through the uprights, giving the Tigers an incredible 24-22 victory.
    Macon will look to build on that win this Friday night in Shelbina against their arch-rivals, the South Shelby Cardinals.
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