DODGE CITY — Already duplicating their season win total of each of the last two football campaigns, the Great Bend HIgh School Panthers came up with a huge road victory on Friday night, whacking Dodge City 24-7.
The Panthers, who finished 4-4 last season and 4-5 the year before, improved to 4-1 overall, 1-1 in the Western Athletic Conference, shutting out the high-octane Red Demons in the second half.
They took down Dodge City, 3-2, 1-1, on its Homecoming before a large crowd at Memorial Stadium with a puniishing defense and big plays on offense. The Panthers' defense has only allowed seven points over the last two games.
After Mario Espino's 32-yard field goal for the only points of the third quarter, Great Bend owned a 10-7 lead.
Running back Josh Lopez popped a 45-yard touchdown run off a trap play with 11:13 left in the fourth quarter to extend the Panthers' lead to 17-7.
Dodge City drove to the GBHS 44-yard line near the four-minute mark in the fourth quarter before quarterback Kelan Newton's fourth-down incompletion ended the drive.
Bryce Hofmeister added a 28-yard touchdown run off a jet sweep with 2:17 remaining to make it 24-7 and close the scoring.
Dodge City led 7-0 in the first quarter after Demons wide receiver Dakota Duckett had a 75-yard catch-and-run for a touchdown off a bubble screen from Newton at the 2:43 mark.
Great Bend tied the game right before halftime on Jonathan Allende's 30-yard touchdown scamper at the 21.9-second mark.
Dodge City's Jordan Doan was down for several minutes in the second half with a neck stinger before getting helped from the field.
Great Bend travels to Liberal next Friday night.
Check out Sunday's Great Bend Tribune for a full game package.
Western Athletic Conference
At Dodge City
Great Bend Panthers 24,
Dodge City Red Demons 7
Great Bend 7 0 3 14 — 24
Dodge City 7 0 0 0 — 7
Dodge City — Dakota Duckett 75 pass from Kelan Newton (Dilllon Burkhard), 2:43
Great Bend — Jonathan Allende 30 run (Mario Espino kick), 21.9
Great Bend — Mario Espino 32 FG, 9:06
Great Bend — Josh Lopez 45 run (Espino kick), 11:13
Great Bend — Bryce Hofmeister 28 run (Espino kick), 2:17