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JERSEY - The Centralia Orphans came close to stealing the win from Jersey Thursday night in Jerseyville as they tied the game up in the fourth quarter, but the Panthers took possession in overtime to take their first victory of the season, 21-14.

The victory was the first for Jersey's legendary coach Ric Johns as the Panthers' mentor.

"We're very fortunate to get out of here with a win tonight," Jersey head coach Ric Johns said. "We easily could have lost that game as well. We're going to learn from it and move on."

In the first half, Jersey’s Kurt Hall scored on an 11-yard run and Brian McDonald carried the pigskin 7 yards. At the half, it was Jersey 14, Centralia 0.

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Mason Blakemore had 177 yards rushing in the game for the Orphans and he scored on a 5-yard and 2-yard touchdown runs in the second half.

The game went into overtime at 14-14. McDonald scored on a 1-yard run in the OT for the victory. Hall had a huge game for the Panthers with 130 yards rushing, followed by quarterback Matthew Jackson with 106 yards and McDonald with 85 yards on the ground.

Jersey improves to 1-2 and hosts Highland a week from today. The loss was the third on the season for Centralia in three games.

Johns said although there were points where the Panthers struggled with their speed, it felt good to secure that first win.

"It's nice to get that first win. It's a big win for me and I hope we have many more in the future," Johns said.

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