For the first time since the 2016 season, the Miami Trace Panthers football team has started the season at 3-0.
The Panthers remained undefeated Friday night with a 42-7 win over the visiting McClain Tigers.
Miami Trace got on the board with a 9-yard run by Jayden LeBeau with 10:38 to play in the first quarter. Zach Warnock’s kick was good to give the Panthers a 7-0 lead. Warnock went 6 for 6 in extra-point kicks Friday night.
With 6:57 to play in the first, Westin Melvin passed to Josh Gilmore for a 56-yard touchdown.
The Panthers continued to roll in the second quarter, as Melvin found Gilmore again, this time for a 5-yard pass play just eight seconds into the period.
With 5:56 to play in the first half, LeBeau broke free for a 47-yard run that put the Panthers in the driver’s seat, 28-0.
The Tigers avoided a shutout when Drake Stapleton passed to Andrew Potts for 22 yards and a touchdown. Braeden Bergstrom connected on the extra-point kick to make it 28-7 at the half.
The Panthers scored once in the third quarter and again late in the game.
With 7:11 to play in the third, LeBeau ran for a 2-yard touchdown.
With 42 seconds to play in the game, Matthew Haddox scored on a 4-yard run.
Miami Trace accumulated 421 yards of offense on 47 plays to 142 yards for the Tigers on 50 plays.
The Panthers carried the ball 32 times for 216 yards, while McClain rushed the ball 31 times for 64 yards.
Melvin was 10 of 15 passing for 205 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions.
For the Tigers, Stapleton was 6 of 19 for 78 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.
LeBeau had 125 yards on 17 carries and three touchdowns.
Haddox carried six times for 58 yards and one touchdown.
Gilmore had seven receptions for 191 yards and two touchdowns, averaging 27.3 yards per catch.
Hunter McBee led the Panthers defensively with six tackles.
Austin Boedeker and Preston Reed had interceptions for the Panthers.
Potts led the Tigers with six tackles, including one quarterback sack. Potts also led McClain in rushing with 68 yards on 16 carries.
Landen Eubanks and Seth Wise had interceptions for McClain. Wise had two pass receptions for 26 yards.
Bergstrom punted three times for a 31-yard average.
Melvin punted twice for a 27.5-yard average.
Miami Trace (3-0 overall, 2-0 FAC) will face likely its toughest test next week in a battle of unbeaten teams as the Panthers travel to take on Jackson.
McClain (0-3, 0-2) will host Chillicothe next week. The Cavaliers broke open a 14-14 halftime tie with 27 unanswered points to defeat Hillsboro Friday, 41-14.
Chris Hoppes is the sports editor for the Record-Herald in Washington C.H.