Going into the Panthers’ game at Gainesville, Van Alstyne Coach Mikeal Miller was concerned about nullifying the Leopards speed advantage.
The game plan obviously worked as Van Alstyne held Gainesville to just 11 points and came away with a 20-11 win to cap the non-district portion of the 2016 season.
Van Alstyne (4-1) won its fourth game of the season over a Class 4-A team.
Senior running back Levi Jones rushed for a season-high 214 yards and a touchdown in the contest. It was Jones’ fifth consecutive game of more than 100 rushing yards and he will go into District 5-3A (I) play with over 800 yards for the season.
Gage Proctor, who threw for five touchdowns last week, connected with De’Angelo Alexander for a score and rushed for another in the Panthers’ win.
Scott Taylor and Austin Moore each booted point-after kicks and Grayson Leinart had two interceptions to stop Gainesville drives.
Van Alstyne, following a much-needed week of recuperation, will travel to Whitesboro on Oct. 7 to open the district season.
The Gainesville Leopard junior varsity team in general, and particularly Bubba Baker, had too much speed for the Panthers and the visitors prevailed in a 40-14 game at Panther Stadium on September 22nd.
Baker returned the opening kickoff 66 yards for a touchdown and the JV Blue was down 6-0
Van Alstyne’s Tanner Jones recovered a Gainesville fumble on the Leopards next possession and Jones later scored on a 59-yard run to tie the game.
Zach Smith’s two-point conversion run put the Panthers on top, 8-6.
After Gainesville had taken a 20-8 lead, the Panthers mounted a 63-yard drive. A 14-yard pass from Smith to Colton Hobbs and a 10-yard run by Jones moved the ball to the Leopards’ 15-yard line.
Two plays later Jones scored his second touchdown of the contest and at the half it was a 20-14 game.
Bubba Baker stepped up big time for the visitors in the second half and the Leopards went home with a 40-14 win.
Van Alstyne Blue wraps up the non-district slate with a 3-2 record.