WEST ALEXANDRIA — Twin Valley South’s (0-1) offense struggled to get moving Friday night as the Panthers fell 20-0 to Carlisle (1-0) in both teams’ season openers.
Disaster struck early in South’s season as Carlisle’s Talon Borders returned the opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown (extra point was missed) to make it 6-0 just seconds into the game.
To begin the next drive, South sophomore quarterback Cole Bishop picked up four yards on a keeper, but the Panthers moved backwards on second down before Bishop’s pass fell incomplete on third, stalling South’s opening drive.
The Indians’ offense began marching on their next drive, working down to South’s 49-yard line before the Panthers forced a punt on third-and-18.
South’s offense showed signs of life on the next drive, converting on a third-and-20 with a 28-yard pass from Bishop to junior Wyatt Lakes in which Lakes high-pointed the ball over two Carlisle defenders.
After being pushed to third-and-12 from their own 47-yard line, sophomore Cais Kingsley got 11 yards back on third down before picking up four more yards on a fourth down conversion.
Later facing a third-and-4 from Carlisle’s 31-yard line, the Panthers were pushed back on third down before getting tackled behind the line of scrimmage on fourth, turning the ball over on downs going into the second quarter.
Carlisle then embarked on a 12-play drive, scoring on a run from four yards out to extend the lead to 14-0 after a successful two-point conversion.
The Panthers went three-and-out on their next drive, but despite recovering a Carlisle fumble on the Indians’ ensuing drive, South once again went three-and-out, and the first half came to an end.
On South’s opening drive of the second half, the Panthers fell behind the chains and faced third-and-16. A delay of game on South made it third-and-21, and after a 19-yard pass from Bishop to junior Cole McNinch, South faced fourth-and-2, but a false start forced the Panthers to punt from their own 38-yard line.
A fumble on Carlisle’s next drive gave South some hope, but the Panthers went three-and-out again, and would do so on their following drive as well.
The Indians got the ball back to begin the fourth at their own 38-yard line before breaking off a huge run to get down to South’s goal line; Carlisle scored soon after, making it 20-0 after a failed two-point conversion.
Neither team found much success moving the ball as time wound down in the fourth and rain approached West Alexandria, with the final ending 20-0 in favor of Carlisle.
Bishop finished the game 8-of-24 for 135 yards. The sophomore also led the Panthers on the ground, finishing with 14 yards on six carries.
Lakes was the main beneficiary of Bishop’s eight completions, hauling in three catches for 58 yards.
Senior Matthew Cornett, junior Eric Allison, sophomore Brayden Koeller and McNinch also hauled in passes for the Panthers.
As a team, the Panthers got to Carlisle’s quarterback three times, with solo sacks by sophomore Jace Thuma and junior Caiden Kingsley, and half a sack each from senior Logan Clark and sophomore Dalton Cornett.
McNinch and Koeller were also credited with fumble recoveries.
The Panthers will play next at Arcanum on Friday, Aug. 27, with kickoff set for 7 p.m.
Reach Braden Moles at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @BradenMoles