QB Clark Evans sparkles as Thonon Black Panthers overwhelm newcomers to open season

Thonon Black Panthers quarterback Clark Evans showed no signs of rust in the opening game of the season as he threw five touchdown passes in leading his team to a 55-14 pummeling of French Elite League newcomers, the Catalan Grizzlys this past weekend.

The Black Panthers, leading 21-7 at the half, exploded for 34 second-half points, 21 in the final quarter, to win going away.

Evans, the 2019 French league MVP, completed 25 of 32 passes for 355 yards and five touchdowns and ran for another 98 yards and a major score and was named Game MVP. Wide receiver Titouan Billard caught seven passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns and Damien Di Cursi had three receptions for 73 yards and another two touchdowns. Exavier Edwards caught the fifth touchdown pass from Evans and added another two on the ground for Thonon. Di Cursi kicked six of seven PATs as well. Linebacker Anthony Cheron led a ferocious Black Panthers defense recording six tackles and five quarterback sacks!

Catalan quarterback Jon Brown was held to 115 yards passing with one touchdown pass and gained just 10 yards rushing.  Sean Boswell caught the lone touchdown pass from Brown while Ozny Adramann rushed for 36 yards and the other touchdown.

The Black Panthers set the tone early as Evans found Di Cursi in the end zone for the game’s first two touchdowns. But Catalan fought back in the second quarter. The defense got the game’s first turnover as the defense picked off an errant Evans pass and then Brown connected with Adramann to close the gap to 14-7.

The comeback was short-lived though as Evans punched the ball in from the three-yard line just before the half to up the score to 21-7.

/exavier Edwards hauling in a TD pass Photo: Galdec Photos

Edwards adds to the Thonon lead early in the third quarter, plunging into the end zone to cap an Evans-led drive making the score 28-7. With the Black Panthers now playing excellent defense, Edwards scored another touchdown, this time on a pass reception giving Thonon a 34-7 lead heading into the final period.

Cheron hunted down Brown for another Thonon sack early in the fourth forcing a punt and Edwards and the offense took advantage scoring touchdown #6 adding to the lead, making it 41-7.

A moment’s inattention on the part of the Thonon defense allowed Brown to find Boswell reducing the lead to 41-14.

Billard added two late touchdowns to put the game away for good.

With the win, the Black Panthers extended their unbeaten streak in France to 13 games since losing the French final to the La Courneuve Flash in 2018.

Photos: Zebulon Photo, Galdec Photo



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