Wright piles up three TDs in first half as Panthers rout Rattlers

Palo Verde’s Brandon Wright rushed for 167 yards and three touchdowns on nine carries to lead the second-ranked Panthers (3-0, 1-0 Northwest) in a 56-12 rout of visiting Mojave (0-1, 0-1 Northwest) on Saturday.

Wright scored on 41-, 2-, and 32-yard runs in the first quarter to pace Palo Verde to an early 21-0 lead.

Joshua Symonette sacked Mojave quarterback Trevonte Veal in the end zone for a safety, and Austin Whalen returned a fumble eight yards for a TD that gave the Panthers a 28-0 lead after the first quarter.

Jonathan Maxwell capped an 84-yard drive with a 25-yard TD run early in the second quarter to put Palo Verde up 35-0.

The Panthers added two more TDs in the second quarter on Demetrius Ballard’s 24-yard fumble return and a 27-yard run by Arie McQuaig to push the lead to 49-0, beginning the running clock with 4:38 left in the first half.

Eric South finished a six-play, 65-yard drive with a 3-yard TD scamper for Palo Verde’s final score in the third quarter.

Veal scored both of Mojave’s touchdowns late in the game: a 27-yard pass to Bryant Lewis, and 8-yard run with 40 seconds left.