MANSON — Head coach Mike Kauzlarich had plenty of reasons to feel good late Friday evening, and the defensive effort put forth by his Panorama football team was a big reason why.
Panorama (2-0) held host NW Webster (1-1) to 69 passing yards and 48 yards rushing in posting their second shutout of the season in a 31-0 non-district win.
“We have the ability to compete on every Friday night if our defense continues to perform at this level,” Kauzlarich said. “I also felt out punt team was very essential to the field position battle. We punted six times (Luke South averaged 36 yards per boot) and never allowed them to get a return, which was important.”
Touchdown dives of one yard from South and from Dominic Walker and a pair of successful two-point conversions gave the visitors a 16-0 lead after one quarter of play. The margin grew to 22-0 at the intermission after Trent Hambleton intercepted a Cougar pass and sprinted 38 yards for a touchdown.
The defense got into the scoring act with a safety in the third quarter to push the Panther advantage to 24-0, with Walker finding Zach Rizzuti for a 32-yard TD pass later in the frame. A Kyle Cogil PAT kick moved the score to 31-0, where it remained.
Walker was 6-15-2 for 127 yards and a TD through the air, with South 3-5-1 for 29 yards.
Jackson Carstens caught six passes for 73 yards, Jack Weinkoetz one for 37 yards and Lucas Leiferman one for 14 yards to go with the 32-yard TD snatch by Rizzuti.
Kade Kemble’s 73 yards on nine rushes led the ground game. South (7-38, 1 TD), Wyatt Clark (3-11) and Walker (15-0, 1 TD) also hauled the pigskin.
Cooper Anderson led the defense with 5.5 tackles, with Hambleton, Preston Walker and Drew Taylor adding 4.5 tackles apiece.
Panorama hosts Interstate-35 (1-1) Friday. I-35 defeated Central Decatur, 34-6, in week one before falling, 3-0, to Mt. Ayr Sept. 6.