Playoff implications: Goshen hosts Lanett this Friday

Published 2:23 pm Wednesday, October 12, 2022

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This Friday night, the Goshen Eagles (5-3, 2-3) host the Lanett Panthers (3-5, 2-3) in a Class 2A, Region 3 game with big playoff implications.

Both Reeltown and Highland Home have clinched playoff spots in Region 3 and are vying for the region title, while Luverne is in the driver’s seat for the No. 3 seed. Goshen, LaFayette and Lanett are all fighting for the fourth and final playoff spot with each team having just two region games remaining, making each one a must-win.

Goshen already holds a win over LaFayette, with Lanett on the schedule this week, the Eagles now hold their playoff destiny in their own hands. By winning this week and next week against Horseshoe Bend, Goshen leaves no doubts.

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Lanett is a former Class 1A powerhouse, having won the 2019 Class 1A State Championship, but has also been dominant in Class 2A, as well. Not only did Lanett win the Class 2A State Championship in 2017, before dropping down to 1A, the Panthers won 20 games in the past two seasons and made deep playoff runs in both 2020 and 2021, as a part of Region 4.

This season has been up and down for the Panthers, however. Lanett holds a non-region win over Class 1A’s Notasulga and non-region losses to Class 5A’s Valley and Class 4A’s Handley. In region play, Lanett dominated LaFayette and Horseshoe Bend, but fell to Highland Home, Luverne and Reeltown. Those three defeats just happen to be the same three region teams the Eagles have fallen to. In fact, both Lanett and Goshen lost to Luverne on late touchdowns from Luverne.

Goshen comes into this week with a pair of running backs hitting on all cylinders as both Szemerick Andrews and Jamari McClure eclipsed 100 yards rushing last week. On the season, McClure has amassed 888 yards and 13 touchdowns on 88 carries, while Andrews has tallied 669 yards and eight touchdowns on 72 carries. McClure also has nine catches for 211 yards and six touchdowns through the air and Andrews has been a stalwart on the defensive end with 45 tackles, five tackles-for-loss, one sack and an interception return for a touchdown.

Quarterback Peyton Stamey has completed 23-of-57 pass attempts for 658 yards, 12 touchdowns and five interceptions, while Tyler McLendon is his favorite target with 14 catches for 452 yards and five touchdowns.

Defensively, Galloway leads the Eagle defense with 45 tackles, eight tackles-for-loss, one sac and three interceptions. Galloway has also had a knack for finding the end zone. He’s returned two interceptions for touchdowns along with earning a touchdown catch and rushing touchdown on offense. Leon Cowart also has 33 tackles, seven tackles-for-loss and two sacks on defense.

This Friday’s game will be just the third time these two schools have played and the first since 2007. Lanett holds a 2-0 record against the Eagles with Lanett winning 42-14 in 2007 and 28-14 in 2006.