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PANTHERS WIN BIG, SET UP FD SHOWDOWN

Baird runs wild in semifinals with 284 yards

By Patrick Lujan

The long-awaited showdown between the FD Friars and Guam High Panthers in high school football will finally take place after the Panthers handled the GW Geckos 28-0 in the semifinals Friday night.

Meanwhile, the Friars throttled the JFK Islanders early and cruised in the other semifinals 36-0. The two high-powered teams are now set to face off in the championship game next Saturday at the GW Field at 7 pm.

Panthers work horse Deshawn Baird had another monster game with 284 yards on the ground on 16 carries (17.75 YPC) and three touchdowns and the Guam High defense picked off GW six times in their convincing semifinals match at Guam High.

Deshawn Baird had a monster game with 284 yards and three TDs

HIGH OCTANE OFFENSE

From the start, the Panthers game plan was to give the rock to its junior star running back. Baird’s first two carries of the game totaled 77 yards, as his offensive line provided gaping holes up the middle for the nifty back as his second carry resulted in a 31-yard score.

Baird’s second score came early in the second quarter when he went off tackle to the left for a 20-yard cruise into the end zone.

Coming out of a 14-0 halftime lead, Baird on the first carry of the second half, bounced out left and sprinted down the sidelines for a 78-yard score for his third touchdown. The purple defense barely got a hand on him on all three scores.

“I saw my line, they were blocking and executing,” Baird said. “They created some lanes, especially the cutback lanes that I can take advantage of. They basically helped me be successful.”

Quarterback Aaron Johnson capped off the scoring for the Panthers with an easy 1-yard QB sweep on the very next possession. Johnson added 61 yards on the ground.

“Every time we play GW, it isn’t an easy game,” said Guam High coach Greg Jacobs. “They give us a run for our money. Our hats off to GW for giving us a good test.

“We had some pretty easy games so having a good test that GW gave us tonight is a good thing. It’s going to keep us humble and make us work hard to get that hunger back.”

STOUT DEFENSE

Meanwhile, the defense pitched a shutout, thanks to six interceptions. Safety Joey Delia snatched three (all in the fourth quarter) while Benjamin Harris grabbed two INTs in the first half and Elijah Ferrell-Ayers pulled one in early in the third quarter.

Guam High forced a 3-and-out in GW’s first three possessions, limiting the Geckos to just 19 yards in the first half and 109 yards in the game.

Twin brothers Cameron and Justin Brantley also got into the defensive party with one sack each.

For the Geckos, running back Sage Castro ran tough with 53 yards on 10 carries. Rayce Rios and Jaden Santos both came up with interceptions on the GW defense.

HUGE SHOWDOWN

This now sets up the championship game everyone has been waiting for. Their much anticipated regular season game was, unfortunately, forfeited by the Panthers because of a social media fiasco.

With the way the Panthers offense has been rolling and a solid all-around performance against the Geckos in the semis, Guam High will be bringing in a ton of confidence against the record-setting Friars.

“I’m very excited, especially since we came this close to beating them last year. I really do think that we have a good chance of winning. We do have a lot of work to do, but I feel that we can take the championship this year.”

– Panther Deshawn Baird on the championship game

This will be Baird’s last game with the Panthers as his family will be relocating to the states in the summer.

The championship game will be broadcast live on GSPN!

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COMING SOON …

4th Quarter Post Season

Boys Volleyball Champion v Champion on May 19

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Congratulations @seadancer_bailey
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Mario Bork led the Warriors with 20 points in the championship game.

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