O'Fallon Returns From COVID-19 Quarantine, Jumps To Early 21-0 Leads, Pulls Off 29-19 Upset Of East St. Louis
EAST ST. LOUIS - The O'Fallon Township High School football team had missed their past two games against both Belleville West and Alton after the Panthers were placed into quarantine after a number of players tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, and when they returned this week, only had five days of practice to prepare for powerful East St. Louis, ranked number one in the state Associated Press Class 6A poll.
On Saturday afternoon at Clyde C. Jordan Memorial Stadium, the Panthers got perhaps the biggest win in program history with a stunning 28-19 win over the Flyers in their first game back from their quarantine.
The East Side loss broke a 27-game Southwestern Conference winning streak, dating back to their last loss, falling to Belleville West on Sept. 26, 2015. The Flyers hadn't lost to O'Fallon since 2013.
The Panthers jumped out to a 21-0 first quarter lead on a six-yard run by Ty Michael with 8:51 left in the period, a 21-yard pass from Michael to Deshaun Mosley with 6:48 left and a 10-yard pass from Michael to Beau Carney with 1:38 left in the first. Ian Wagner added all three conversions for the lead.
The Flyers got on the board with a 51-yard interception return for a touchdown by Dallas Brown with 10:25 left in the second, with Ryan Boyd adding the convert to make it 21-7. East Side cut the lead further on special teams 30 seconds from halftime when Luther Burden III returned a punt 34 yards for another touchdown, but Boyd's kick missed to leave the score 21-13 at halftime.
After a scoreless third quarter, Burden scored his second touchdown with10:08 left in regulation, catching a 19-yard pass from Robert Battle to cut the O'Fallon lead to 21-19. A two-point pass was incomplete.
The Panthers' defense held East Side in check, and clinched the game with 1:35 left on a three-yard pass from Michael to Christian Joiner to give O'Fallon the upset win 28-19.
The O'Fallon defense held the vaunted East St. Louis running game to 150 yards rushing, and also held Battle to 13-of-25 passing for 106 yards and a touchdown, intercepting him twice.
The Flyers are now 3-1 and host Belleville East next Friday night at home, while the Panthers are officially 2-0 and host Edwardsville Friday night at OTHS Stadium. Both games kickoff at 7 p.m.