Football: Maxwell edges Esparto in home opener

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The long awaited return of Friday Night Lights was no disappointment in Maxwell, as the Panthers came out victorious 38-22 over the Esparto Spartans on the Panthers’ home field. 

Wasting no time, Maxwell’s leading rusher of the night, Isaiah Cardenas, capped on a 48-yard touchdown on the Panthers’ first play of the game, followed by a two point conversion to an early 8-0 Panther lead. 

Senior quarterback, Trent Hendrix, connected with Wyatt Hendrix on Maxwell’s second possession of the game, for a 33-yard touchdown. 

Esparto fell short on completions in the first quarter, leading to Maxwell’s 14-0 lead, until Esparto’s Sebastian Acevedo finally made contact for a 33-yard rush to Carlos Garcia for the Spartans’ first touchdown and two point conversion of the game. 

Maxwell’s defense bent but never broke as Garcia claimed two more touchdowns in the second half in attempt to narrow the score gap. But the Panthers held their own with four more touchdowns and claimed their first win of the season. 

“We developed a solid game plan for Esparto,” said Head Coach Russ Jones. “Our players played well most of the game, Our O line made some holes and Cardenas ran the ball very well. Trent played a solid game at quarterback and our defensive played well, most of the game.” 

Cardenas had a monster of game, rushing 16 times for 223 yards, completing two point-conversion and scoring three of the Maxwell’s six touchdowns. Tony Lopez caught four of four passes and scored two touchdowns for the Panthers.

Maxwell has an away non-conference game at 7 PM on Friday in Clarksburg against the Delta Saints.