RHS Panthers secure playoff berth

Panther senior Chas Byerly is pictured getting an interception against Soroco last Friday. Byerly rushed for 129 yards, scored three touchdowns, a two-point conversion and had an interception against the Soroco Rams. The 54-7 win secured a playoff spot for the Panthers, the first in several years.

Panther senior Chas Byerly is pictured getting an interception against Soroco last Friday. Byerly rushed for 129 yards, scored three touchdowns, a two-point conversion and had an interception against the Soroco Rams. The 54-7 win secured a playoff spot for the Panthers, the first in several years.
RANGELY I With a 54-7 win over the Soroco Rams last Friday on Yaeger Field in Rangely, the Panther football team secured a playoff berth and will host South Park in the final game of the regular season this Friday.
“I’m really proud of our team and happy for the seniors making the playoffs for the first time in their high school careers,” head coach Paul Fortunato said.
The Panthers knew they needed to win in order to secure the fourth seed (they are currently third) and they left no doubt who was going to win as they scored 14 points in the first seven minutes and led 28-0 at the end of the first quarter.
“I really did expect to win by so much,” head coach Paul Fortunato said. “They had a better record than us but we came out fired up and played with high intensity.”
Senior Chas Byerly led the Panthers with three touchdowns, including two in the first quarter and an interception that set up his second touchdown of the evening.
Sophomore Luis Contreras, who led the defense with five sacks, recovered a fumble, which was converted into eight more points after a pass from Tobie Gasper to Cameron Enterline at the goal line before Gasper took it in for the touchdown on the next play and Enterline caught the two-point conversion, to give the Panthers a 22-0 lead with more than two minutes left to play in the first quarter.
Senior Colton Coombs recorded four sacks on defense, recovered a fumble, which led to a 40-yard touchdown run by Gasper and Coombs ran for a 63-yard touchdown in the third quarter.
The Rams did score their first and only touchdown in the second quarter and recovered the onside kick but they were the only highlights for the Rams.
Gasper intercepted a pass and Byerly scored again on a 45-yard run before Fortunato sent in quarterback Kaulan Brady who threw a pass to Enterline for a touchdown halfway through the second quarter.
The Panthers scored two more touchdowns in the third quarter, one by Gasper on a 47-yard run and another when Enterline intercepted a pass and returned it for a touchdown for the final score.
Friday’s game will be senior night, honoring seniors Byerly, Coombs, Gasper, Gabe Garcia, Bryson Palacios and JoD Stults playing their final regular season high school game on Yaeger Field. Kickoff is 7 p.m.