It may not have been the most climatic finish for Orange, but a share of a conference championship will suffice.
The Panthers romped past Oxford Webb 42-0 on Friday night to finish the regular season 10-1, 5-1 in tbe Big 8. With the win, Orange clinches a share of the Big 8 Championship.
Now, the Panthers wait to see what happens next week with Southern Durham and Northwood, each of whom can tie Orange for first in the Big 8 with a win in their respective season finales.
Southern, who defeated Cedar Ridge 60-3 on Friday, also finishes the regular season against Webb next week.
Northwood defeated Northern Vance on Friday 35-6. Chapel Hill travels to Pittsboro next week to face the Chargers.
If Northwood, Orange and Southern all finish 5-1 in the league, then there will be a drawing to determine the top three seeds for the 3-AA state playoffs. The pairings will be announced next Saturday.
The potential drawing will certainly hold more drama than Orange’s game against the Warriors did on Friday. It was a runaway from the beginning.
Quarterback Jackson Schmid opened the scoring with a five-yard touchdown pass to Drew Lemaster.
In the second quarter, Lemaster completed a 95-yard drive with a 3-yard touchdown run. Schmid tossed his 2nd touchdown pass of the half to Cody Evans from 7-yards away, increasing the Orange lead to 21-0.
In his final regular season football game, Bryse Wilson opened the 2nd half with a 70-yard touchdown run. On the next drive, Wilson scored on an 18-yard run to make it 35-0.
Schmid ended the scoring with a 1-yard plunge on a quarterback sneak.
After going without a touchdown in Orange’s first two games of the year against Person and Northern Durham, Lemaster has now scored touchdowns in nine consecutive games.
Now, after 11 straight weeks of games (12 including the scrimmage against Eastern Alamance on August 14), the Panthers can heal up and prepare for the playoffs.
Skill has taken them to six straight wins and a share of a conference title, but luck probably will determine where their next game will be played.