The Maypearl sub-varsity football teams were in Italy Thursday, taking on the Gladiators. The seventh grade Maypearl team won the opener 30-12.
Next, the eighth grade team scored in every quarter to win the game 34-0.
It was the Italy junior varsity’s turn to romp. The Gladiators scored quick and often to beat Maypearl 44-0. The Panther team, hampered by injuries, discipline and promotion to the varsity put up a fight but in the beginning and the end they were no match for the Gladiators.
Italy got on the board with less than two minutes gone in the first quarter, when Desmond Anderson ran for a 52-yard touchdown. The try for two failed and the Gladiators led 6-0.
At the end of the first quarter, the Gladiators scored twice. Leonard Castellano ran into the end zone from 13-yards out and Italy led 12-0 with 1:26 left in the first stanza. After the kickoff a Panther fumble gave the Gladiators possession at the Maypearl 3-yard line. A dive at the Panther line by Curtis Cole produced a touchdown and Anderson got the 2-point conversion to swell the Gladiator lead to 20-0 with 1:11 left in the first quarter.
Heath Clemons ran for an 18-yard Gladiator touchdown to increase the margin to 26-0 with 6:16 left in the first half. The host team took that lead into the intermission.
Panthers Marcus Hernandez and Jay Thompson ran the ball well, but sustained drives were hard to come by.
Panthers Zach Brandt and Javi Gonzales got a sack to end an Italy drive. But, with just three minutes gone in the third quarter Italy’s Anderson was on the loose again as he stormed across the Panther goal line from 25-yards out. Italy led 32-0. Then, Kyle Wilkens upped the Gladiator score to 38-0 to start the fourth quarter. Justin Hayes scored for Italy with nine seconds left in the game and the final 44-0 score was posted.
Maypearl will play at Hamilton Thursday.