PORTAL - On Portal's senior night, a Claxton freshman stole the show.
Claxton quarterback Karon Taylor picked up a total of 279 yards and four total touchdowns as the Tigers (2-7, 2-3 Region 3-A) rattled off a 42-21 win Friday night.
The Tigers began the game with an easy, 3-minute, 55-yard touchdown drive. After scoring, Claxton went for — and missed — a quick two point conversion, but the Panthers weren’t phased.
Down by 6, the home team would quickly rally going to work behind Strong running and three Claxton penalties to take a 7-6 lead.
On the ensuing drive, Taylor really went to work with 62 total yards capped off by an 18 yard touchdown run. The senior night magic was all out for the Panthers who were forced to punt, the first non-scoring drive of the game. Portal’s next drive was cut very short after 2 plays as Craig Ware fumbled the ball at the PHS 37 yard line.
Taylor wasted no time, lifting a beautiful 37 yard touchdown to Myles Freeman to make it a 21-7 game. Another quick touchdown drive from Claxton sent the Panthers to the locker room down 28-7.
The second half began with a sly onside kick to take any momentum back from Portal. Claxton’s drive stalled out and gave the ball back to the Panthers who were smelling a comeback. Two minutes and 63 yards later, it was a two score game.
But the Tigers played villain again with a steady drive resulting in Taylor’s third touchdown of the night.
Portal stayed within striking distance into the fourth quarter, trailing just 35-21, but Claxton picked off a pass with four minutes to play and removed any doubt left about the outcome with one final touchdown to double up the Panthers.