A week after tying last season’s regular season powerhouse Brantford Collegiate Institute Colts, the Paris District High School Panthers got a junior football wake-up call courtesy of the North Park Collegiate Trojans.
The Trojans (2-0), who are being billed as the early team to beat in the Brant high school league, won a 45-7 victory against the Panthers (0-1-1) at the Gretzky centre field on Thursday night.
“We have a number of returning key players from last year,” Trojans coach John Minutillo said. “And we have a number of kids that have played (Brantford) Bison’s football before. That experience is huge in junior football.
“We have some good, talented kids and are looking forward to a competitive year.”
In the first quarter on Thursday, Trojans middle linebacker Nolan Harris had two interceptions and a touchdown before the game was seven minutes old.
In all, six different players punched in a score for the Trojans.
“We have a good balance (on offence),” Minutillo said. “Kids that can do everything. So we can run it out if we have to and go to the air if we have to.”
Running back Keaton Wray, quarterback Matt Krason, Matt Minutillo, Brad Ward and Ian Walker also had touchdowns for the Trojans.
Ward caught a two-point conversion on the game’s first touchdown and Minutillo kicked four extra points and a field goal.
For the second week in a row, running back Ryan Campbell scored the lone touchdown for the Panthers. Corson Searles hit the convert.
But the Panthers could not find a way to put up any more points against a staunch Trojans defence.
While the Trojans do look very good in the early going, the team doesn’t get to test itself against the defending local and provincial champion Assumption College Lions until Oct. 18.
“We won’t take anybody lightly,” Minutillo said.
The rest of Week 2 features a Friday night matchup between the Lions (1-0) and Colts at 6 p.m. and a homecoming game at Pauline Johnson Collegiate between the Thunderbirds (0-1) and St. John’s College Green Eagles (0-1) at noon on Saturday.