New-look Panthers set for rematch with Newark Catholic

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The first look at this year’s Maysville Panthers will come Thursday night, as they take on Newark Catholic at Maysville Athletic Complex.

These two teams squared off in the first week of last season at White Field in Newark. Maysville defeated the Green Wave, 27-16, thanks to top performances from many players.

Carson Jarrett rushed for 189 yards on 23 carries, scoring three touchdowns for the Panthers. In total, Maysville racked 374 rushing yards and 171 passing yards, the bulk of which came off the arm of Donovan Good and Connor Sidwell.

The Panthers’ defense was also staunch in the defeat of Newark Catholic. Maysville allowed Newark Catholic to rush for only 58 yards. Green Wave quarterback Hunter Chapman fared a bit better, accumulating 170 passing yards, but he threw six interceptions, three of them to Panthers defensive end Dallas Rowland and one each to Jarrett, Cole Tompkins and Kobe Gamble.

For Maysville, who finished last season at 7-3 (5-3 Muskingum Valley League), they’ll have to find new threats. Of the players mentioned above, only Good and Tompkins are returning to the team this year. The loss of Jarrett is particularly tough, as his 1,075 total rushing yards last season ranked second in the MVL. Tompkins, however, is expected to step in at quarterback this season and give the Panthers another dimension with both his passing and rushing abilities. Hayden McGee, who was Maysville’s leading returner last season, will assume the running back duties.

As for the Green Wave of Newark Catholic, they’re facing plenty of changes too. Ryan Aiello steps in as head coach, taking over for Bill Franks, who now coaches Maysville’s MVL foe New Lexington. Franks leaves big shoes to fill, as he led the Green Wave to one state championship win in two state title games to go along with six regional titles in his time in Newark. Last season, however, Franks and the Green Wave went just 3-7. The core of the Green Wave offense returns, including their top two options at running back in Derek Hawk and Mikey Canning. They also have four senior receivers in Granger Evans, Lucas Pierce, Grant Myers and Sam Pegher. Chapman, however, did graduate, leaving a hole at quarterback expected to be filled by junior Matt Carlisle.

Tune in to Gridiron Glory on Friday night at 11:30 to see the highlights from this game, along with many others across our coverage area.