New England Football League Panthers Hold Off Bulls | New England Football League
New England Football League

Panthers Hold Off Bulls

Southern Maine’s Issiah Bachelder gets pulled down by the Panthers’ Akwan Shabazz
(Photograph provided by James D. Bender)

MERIDEN, CT – The match up with the Connecticut Panthers and Southern Maine Raging Bulls went down to the final second as the host team Panthers won 14-7. “It was all that we hoped it would be,” said a Panther fan. “These teams traditionally give us a great battle.” Their last meeting was in the 2014 NEFL AAA Championship game. That night both offenses were in rare form as the Panthers won 37-31 in overtime.
Again, quarterback Jason Manson was the story for the Panthers offense. Manson threw touchdown passes to both LJ Colon and Markey Desruisseaux which allowed the Panthers to jump out early. This is his 3rd straight game where he has had two or more scoring throws. “Manson is clearly the difference for the Panthers this year,” said NEFL Representative Bernie Armstrong. “He gives them a proven passer to go along with their other pieces.”
The Panthers defense controlled the Bulls for most of the game. Quarterback Issiah Bachelder used play action passes to move the ball in the second half. The fourth quarter saw the Bulls offense get into the end zone and cut the score in half. With less than a minute to play, the Bulls were in the red zone again, this time looking to tie the game and hopefully sending it to overtime. On the final play of the game, a Bulls runner dove for the pylon but was called out of bounds by a nearby official.

Jamie Bryant collected over 100 all-purpose yards against Southern Maine
(Photograph provided by James D. Bender)

“It got real tight in the end but we did enough to get the win,” said Panthers Jamie Bryant. “Now we have to play the top team in the league.” The Panthers will host the undefeated Rhode Island Wardogs next weekend. “We’re both playing well right now. It’s going to be the game to see next week.”

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