In 2018, Duncanville (Dallas, Texas) finished exactly one game shy of winning a Class 6A state title. In 2019, the Panthers got off on the right foot.
Duncanville battled in a tight first half against Lancaster before turning on the jets in the second half of a 24-3 victory that positions the Panthers to move up from their current No. 8 ranking in the USA TODAY Super 25.
Here’s what we learned from Duncanville’s first victory of the season.
1) JA’QUINDEN JACKSON TOOK OVER WHEN IT WAS TIME TO TAKE OVER
Jackson, a four-star Texas commit, continues to be the critical piece that drives a versatile Panthers offense. Three touchdown passes, all against a touch Lancaster squad, set up the Panthers before Jackson hobbled off with a limp. That followed a run of interception-punt-fumble. A lesser team might have crumbled, but Jackson willed the Panthers forward. They later added a 32-yard field goal to go up 24-3 in the fourth and that was that for a first victory of the season.
2) THE PANTHERS DEFENSE IS FOR REAL
If it took Duncanville’s offense a bit to get in gear, the Panthers defense was more than capable of minimizing the damage until the offense woke up. Immediately after Jackson’s early interception, Duncanville senior defensive back Thailan Scott picked off a pass by Lancaster’s Glenn Rice Jr. Anything you can do, I can do better? It’s not a game opponents can win against Duncanville’s supreme collection of talent.
3) BANANA SKIN AVERTED FOR DUNCANVILLE
Yes, Duncanville was clearly the more talented team, but that’s not to say the season opener was an easy win. Lancaster is a playoff squad and a perennial threat. Taking care of business not only gets Duncanville on the right foot, but also helped the Panthers avoid the fate of fellow Super 25 squad North Shore (entered the weekend at No. 2). A win is a win, but on opening weekend, it can make an even bigger impact.