By Chris Moore | PA News
PORT NECHES — Roschon Johnson put on a show for the home crowd one more time as the Port Neches-Groves Indians defeated the Houston Northside Panthers 48-7 at The Reservation on Friday. Johnson finished the game 17 of 26 for 265 yards and 4 touchdowns. The Indian defense continued a bend-but-don’t-break mentality after forcing the Panthers to turn the ball over on downs in the red zone three times in the first half.
After forcing the Panthers to punt on the opening drive, PNG’s offense capped off an eight play drive with a 40-yard pass from Johnson to Jose Ceja to give the Indians a 7-0 lead with 6:11 left in the first quarter. After another PNG touchdown, Northside put together a 13-play drive that took around five minutes off of the clock. However, the drive stalled after back-to-back sacks forced the Panthers to turn the ball over on downs.
The game changed when…
The Panthers were able to force a three-and-out and took over on the Indians’ 47 down 14. On the first play of the drive, Northside running back Jaylon Travis took the ball 22 yards down to the Indian 25-yard line. Once again, the PNG defense held tough and didn’t allow another first down, forcing another turnover on downs. The Indians took over on their own 25. After a 40-yard pass from Johnson to Kaleb Wuenschel got the Indians to the Panther 20, Johnson found Wuenschel again in the endzone to give the Indians a 21-0 lead with 2:50 to go in the first half. The Panthers only ran about a minute off the clock before turning the ball over on downs again. PNG took over at their own 23. After a few passes down field, the Indians were on the Panthers’ 9-yard line with about :15 to play. Johnson broke containment and scrambled around before finding Ceja wide open in the back of the end zone to give the Indians a 28-0 lead heading into half time.
The game ball goes to…
The entire PNG team came up big. The defense stopped the Panthers in the redzone multiple times and swarmed Northsides quarterback. Linebacker Donovan Bergeron recorded a pick six in the third quarter. Johnson had a signature night and was aided by Wuenschel, who had a breakout game against Nederland and continued to be a deep threat for Johnson Friday. Wuenschel finished the game with five catches for 110 yards.
Midway through the fourth quarter and the game well in hand, PNG head coach Brandon Faircloth pulled his starters except Johnson who came off the field for a late substitution. The moment gave the home fans one last chance to cheer for the Texas commit.
“I didn’t give it to him,” Faircloth said of Johnson’s moment. “He earned it. He’s the greatest player I ever coached here and borderline the greatest player to ever play here. I wanted to give him a special moment where he can come off the field by himself. He’s done so much for our program and his legacy will live for a really, really long time. Everyone is going to talk about Roschon Johnson for a long time.”
There will be two days to buy tickets for the Indians next game. Tickets go on sale from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday. The second day will be Thursday during the Thanksgiving Day practice in the end zone on the field at The Reservation.
Panthers 7 Indians 48
Northside 0 0 0 7
Port Neches-Groves 14 14 14 6
PNG — Jose Ceja 40 pass from Roschon Johnson (Mario Oceguera kick), 6:11
PNG — Dejaunte Conner 3 run (Oceguera kick), 1:04
PNG — Kaleb Wuenschel 20 pass from Johnson (Oceguera kick), 2:50
PNG — Ceja 9 pass from Johnson (Oceguera kick), :05
PNG — Jaylan Williams 18 pass from Johnson (Oceguera kick), 10:08
PNG — Donovan Bergeron 15 interception (Oceguera kick), 3:51
NS — Justin Beaudion 2 pass from Ronald Holmes (Anthony Zamarron kick), 6:13
PNG — Blake Bost 2 run (kick fail), 1:29
Northside Port Neches-Groves
Rushes-yards 40-160 27-158
Passing yards 270 294
Total yards 430 452
Comp-Art-Int 17-35-2 22-33-0
Fumbles-lost 1-0 0-0
Penalties-yards 8-50 6-42
RUSHING — Northside: Holmes 28-119, Beaudion 4-22, Jaylon Travis 2-18, Clinton Ross 5-11, Rashad Bookmen 1-(-10).Port Neches-Groves: Conner 7-48, Johnson 6-43, Jaylan Williams 1-22, Bost 2-22, Gavin Deslatte 3-11, Rhett Green 2-9, Tyler Hanlon 3-9, Don Trusclair 1-2, Tylor Naquin 1-0 Grant Rogers 1-(-8).
PASSING — Northside: Holmes 17-35-2, 270. Port Neches-Groves: Johnson 18-27-0, 267, Rogers 4-5-0, 27.
RECEIVING —Northside: Devondre Moore 9-189, Beaudion 3-36, DJ Hypolite 32, Bookmen 1-13.Port Neches-Groves: Wuenschel 5-110, Ceja 3-59, Tyler Pippin 3-43, Cooper Hammond 3-20, Williams 1-19, Kade Guilbeau 2-13 Grant Pearson 3-17, Naquin 1-9 Payton Proenza 1-5.