GOWANDA - The Gowanda Panthers came oh-so-close to defeating usual powerhouse Southwestern, but in the end, the Trojans defense made a big play when it needed to, to hold on for a 20-14 victory in Class C South high school football action.
Trailing, 14-6 with eight minutes left in the game, Southwestern's Noah Weinstein scored two touchdowns for the come-from-behind victory.
The Panthers had one last drive, but it was halted by a Corey Breyerton interception which sealed the win.
Gowanda received a stellar performance from Brennan Geiger as he rushed for 139 yards on 23 carries and two touchdowns.
In the first quarter, Geiger hit paydirt from 26 yards out to give the home team a 7-0 lead.
Southwestern finally got on the board in the third quarter as Weinstein scored his first of three touchdowns on a 7-yard scamper to cut the deficit, 7-6.
In the final frame, Geiger increased Gowanda's lead, 14-6 on an 80-yard run.
However, Weinstein scored from 4 yards out with 8:19 remaining, and then again from 2 yards out.
Defensively for Gowanda, John McCarthy had eight tackles and Dalton Francis had six, including a blocked extra point. Chase Williams added an interception in a losing effort.
For Southwestern, Weinstein had 54 yards and three touchdowns on 11 carries while Jacob Chamberlin had 54 yards on four carries.