Norris gave another one away to start the second for the team’s fifth fumble of the night as he and the center could not get the snap under control.
When the Lions weren’t giving the ball away, they put the ball in Lujan’s hands. He powered his way through the middle of Panthers’ defense time after time and racked up 152 yards rushing.
However, when Moore moved the ball inside the Panthers’ 10-yard line, Lujan was not on the field. Neither was Norris, who was replaced by K.J. Carrethers after his sixth fumble of the first half.
Carrethers carried four straight times but was unable to cross the goal line. PCN took a 14-0 advantage into halftime.
On the second play of the third quarter, it was the Panthers turn to lay the ball on the ground. The Lions took advantage of the miscue when Lujan scored from two yards out.
However, PCN struck back in a hurry with a 67-yard bomb to Kaedyn Fuller less than a minute later. The Panthers held a 21-6 lead with 10:10 left in the third period.
Stephan Robinson’s 50-yard touchdown catch from Norris right before the end of the third closed the gap to 21-16 heading into fourth.
Robinson scored again with 1:05 left in the game to give the Lions life.
“It felt good to help the team out,” Robinson said. “Best game of my life. Two touchdowns just feels good.”
But Moore was unable to recover the onside kick and the Panthers ran the clock down to end the night.
The Lions outgained the Panthers 428-337. That includes controlling the clock with 330 yards rushing. But the fumbles and miscues kept them out of the win column.
Moore expects Bernhardy back Friday when it heads to Lawton and take on Eisenhower.
Michael Kinney Follow me @eyeamtruth firstname.lastname@example.org