The Merryville Panthers were off to a slow start this season. Facing another 1-4 record, it was gut check time for the Panthers. Merryville answered the call by winning it's last four, including upsetting Elton at the reservation last week. Heading into week 10, the Panthers are over .500 for the first time this late in the season since 2009.
"The kids are ecstatic about it, it's great," Head coach Randy Jones said. "But we only enjoyed that for the weekend because Monday we had to go back to work, we have a very tough opponent this week in St. Edmund. They understand what they have to do. But they enjoyed it."
Panther running back, Desmond McCain has been the catalyst behind the team's late season emergence. Over the last six weeks, McCain has totaled over 1,000 yards. He surpassed that benchmark for the second straight season. Last week against the Indians, he posted 244 yards and four touchdowns. McCain said, all the credit, goes to his offensive line.
"They blocked their tails off. Holes I could run through and they never game up," Desmond McCain said. "It's all owed to them."
McCain's success isn't just on the field. His maturation as a person has allowed him to become a leader on this football team. His teammates and coaches have all the confidence in him.
"His attitude has been extremely selfless," Jones added. "He went through two games where he didn't score a touchdown and he was the first one there when someone did score to high five and hug them."
"I just talk to them and really they are the leaders, they are the ones that pick me up when I'm tired," McCain said. "I just listen to what they say and try my best and help them out when I can."