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  • John Macon Gillespie

Coverage Recap: Petal Is For Real



Petal has started the 2016 season looking better than they did a year ago during their 6A South State run. On Saturday night, the few questions out there were answered.

Stephon Huderson did just as expected. He ran through, around and away from defenders all night on the way to racking up 184 yards on just 14 carries. He also hauled in a 43-yard touchdown reception. He did the things he always does and the things that made him a 2016 SES Elite 10.

In 2015 Tanner Estill led the Panthers in receiving. He also had solid production in the running game. He has now moved to quarterback and it appears that move will pay off. Estill rushed for 142 yards and passed for 157 in the season opener at Hattiesburg.

Estill and Huderson ran the read option to near perfection and it will likely be the bread and butter of the Petal offense all season long.

Another bright spot for the Panther offense was transfer athlete Xavier Yancey. He is big and physical and keeps the offense from skipping a beat when Huderson needs a breather.

On defense, Petal faced an explosive attack from the Tigers. Hattiesburg quarterback Julian Conner can do a little bit of everything. His athleticism kept plays alive and cause breakdowns in coverage. He ended the game with over 300 yards through the air.

However, although they gave up a load of points and yards, they were able to make the big plays when they needed to. Senior Charlie Marlowe is a tackling machine. He did a great job of not allowing big play back Fabian Franklin from reaching the corner.

Petal looks ready to make another serious run for gold in 2016. If the defense can get close to matching the play of their offense, they should have no trouble making a return trip to the title game.


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