MHS rolls to 49-0 halftime lead at home in first district game of season.

With the game well in hand early on, there was no need for Midlothian to keep the starters on the field longer than the first possession of the third quarter in Friday night’s district opener.

Nine different Panther players rushed for a combined total of 420 yards, led by junior Darren Greeson with 111 yards on five carries, as the Panthers (3-0, 1-0) toyed with Joshua for the most part, coming away with an easy 65-7 rout in the District 5-5A (II) debut for both teams.

The Panthers rolled to a 49-0 halftime lead, then several fresh faces got in on the action in the second half as the regulars got virtually half a night off. Dawson White finished with 75 yards on the ground and Nicholas De Los Santos, the Panthers’ backup quarterback, added 45 yards rushing and 22 yards passing.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Panthers had four interceptions, one returned for a touchdown, and a fumble recovery. Most of the Owls’ 268 total yards were gained against Midlothian reserves in the second half.

Panther Riley Angel gave the Panthers a lift on both sides of the ball early, opening the scoring with a 47-yard catch from starting quarterback Tate Corbin midway through the first quarter and then intercepting a pass on the Owls’ second play of the ensuing series. On the night, Angel caught two passes for 83 yards, finished with two picks on “D” and even threw for a 2-point conversion — all in the first half.

The Panthers struggled early, losing a fumble at the Joshua 26 on their first series of the night. But Midlothian’s defense held on downs, and Corbin’s toss to Angel put the Panthers on top.

The Panthers immediately made the first of four interceptions just inside Owl territory to go back in business, and a Greeson 28-yard run set up Laine Martin’s 4-yard run. The Panthers’ first missed extra point kept it a 13-0 lead.

Joshua picked up a first down but was forced to punt, and Midlothian went a quick 62 yards on four plays: three Corbin completions, followed by Jeremy McCoy’s 9-yard scamper. Angel’s 2-point completion pass to JT. Cavender made it 21-0 after one.

In the second quarter, McCoy, Ethan Hill and Colton Sessums rushed for touchdowns and Corbin connected with Trevor Blankenship for a 49-0 halftime advantage.

Jake Peters’ 9-yard run on the opening series of the second half put the Panthers on top, 56-0.

That was all the scoring for the offense from scrimmage, but Shane Reasonover tacked on a 32-yard field goal and the defense got a pick-six on a 42-yard runback by Andrei Fuentes for a 65-0 upper hand before the end of the third quarter.

Joshua (0-3, 0-1) averted a shutout in the fourth quarter on a touchdown run from Kenyal Wright, who led the Owls with 132 rushing yards.

Up next for the Panthers is a road game at Arlington Seguin (0-3, 0-1), which dropped a 44-6 result to Everman in its opening district contest.