PALMYRA, Mo. (WGEM) -- As great as the Palmyra offense has been all season, the team's defense deserves just as much credit.
Especially when you consider the Panther 'D' has given up a grand total of 30 points over the last nine games.
The gradual improvement from week one to Saturday's quarterfinal against Blair Oaks has been astounding.
Palmyra allowed a combined 60-points the first three weeks of the season and since then nobody has scored more than eight points in a single game.
"There's just so many seniors and so many leaders across the defense," senior Case Doyle said.
"If one person is not making the play then it's another, and we just come out and execute every play."
Senior Josh Hultz has played a key role and was recently named the Clarence Cannon Conference Defensive Player of the Year.
"It's been great. (Defensive coordinator) Coach Kliewer comes up with some great game plans and we just execute that to the best of our ability," Hultz indicated.
"We trust one another on our defense and we make plays."
Doyle on defending Blair Oaks: "We're going to have to play our game, come out and execute, and fulfill our responsibilities."
From an offensive perspective, it's hard to dismiss the leadership from quarterback Brock Butler who's shown a tremendous ability to beat the opposition with both his feet and his arm.
Head coach Kevin Miles calls his senior signal caller 'a gamer.'
"He understands that he's got great guys around him. He really has a concept of putting the ball in the right place when it needs to be. It's amazing," Miles said.
"We're on the same wave length a lot on the field, and it really helps to be able to do that and to be cohesive on offense."
Butler knows it's a complete team effort.
"It's fun knowing that I can hand the ball off to Caleb (Kizer) and (Josh) Hultz and watching them run, and throwing it to (Jordan) Nutt, Mason (Franklin), Caleb, and (Case) Doyle," Butler said.
"It's just fun when I know that I have faith in all of them to do their job and they have faith in me to do my job."
Fresh off their first quarterfinal berth in 13 years the Panthers are back at home on Saturday afternoon with kick-off set for 1:30 p.m.
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WGEM. All Rights Reserved.
Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Administrative Assistant Donna Vancil at 217-228-6617. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at firstname.lastname@example.org.