Seniors Dominate Juniors in Annual Powderpuff Game

Expectations were high for both teams coming into the annual Powderpuff game, but the pressure was definitely on for the Seniors, who were taking the field for the last time.

The Senior class did not disappoint coming away with a 20-12 victory over the Juniors.

“We had a lot of depth and my team really stepped up and made plays. Taylor Dixon was a lockdown corner, Cassie Friday ran the ball exceptionally well and Azia Barnett was a great leader,” said Head Senior Coach Colby Pannebaker.

Taylor Dixon was a lockdown corner, Cassie Friday ran the ball exceptionally well and Azia Barnett was a great leader

— Senior Head Coach Colby Pannebaker

In what has become a tradition, WTAJ sportscaster Jamie Baker joined the refs for the pre-game coin toss to and served as the PA announcer for the first half.

The Seniors won the toss and chose to receive. On the first play of the game the Seniors tried a halfback pass, but the Juniors were ready to stop it. On the next play Senior running back Cassie Friday took a pitch on the left side down to the Juniors 15 yard line.

But the Seniors could go no further and turned the ball over on downs.

The Juniors took over at their own 15 and had a promising first drive down to the Seniors 20, but they couldn’t punch it in either.

This was a problem for the Junior offense all night, who had several drives inside the red zone, but were unable to convert.

“I was very confident in our offense and it worked but we just couldn’t make the plays when needed,” said Junior offensive coordinator Brandon Loose.

The  first quarter ended in a 0-0 stalemate.

In the second quarter, the Seniors started to show their dominance.

Senior Hailey Durbin took the ball down the field for a long gain. On the next play, Senior back Azia Barnett took the ball down the sideline for a 33 yard score. After a failed 2-point conversion the score was 6-0 Seniors.

“I never thought I’d get to say I scored a touchdown, but this was fun,” said Barnett about her touchdown run.

The Juniors next drive was promising, but ended when Senior Taylor Dickson picked off a Emily Lehman pass and took it back to the Junior 15 yard line.

Senior Cassie Friday finished off the drive with a four yard touchdown run, making the score 12-0 after another failed 2-point conversion.

I was very confident in our offense and it worked but we just couldn’t make the plays when needed

— Junior Coach Parker Mitchell

“We made a goal as a team to score at least one touchdown and I never expected to get one myself but it was definitely an unforgettable feeling. I’m so glad I got to share the experience with such a great group of girls,” said Friday.

But the Juniors were able to strike back quickly with a 59 yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Payton Wagner. Yet another failed conversion narrowed the margin to 12-6 at halftime.

“We had to make some adjustments to the Seniors outside run, it was killing us,” said Junior defensive coordinator Ethan Vipond.

The second half was a defensive stalemate. The Juniors were able to contain the Seniors outside run, and the Seniors were dominating with a very aggressive blitzing defense.

Late in the fourth with the score still 12-6, the Seniors drew up a great play and tricked the Junior defense.

Senior Quarterback, Lexi Cannistraci faked the pitch and kept it around the opposite end for an 85 yard touchdown, the longest run in Powderpuff game history.

“We knew the Juniors were really coming hard on our outsides, so we faked the pitch and the rest is history, literally,” said Senior coach Kenny McKernan.

With five seconds left the Seniors ran one last run play up the middle. Junior linebacker Bev Eirich read the play, stripped the ball from the runner, and took it to the house from 55 yards out.

“All I can say is, Bev torched ‘em. It was an amazing thing to watch,” said Junior fan Brandon Kemp.

The Seniors will have the memory of this victory for the rest of their lives, and the Juniors will have one more shot at containing victory for themselves in next years contest.