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November 1, 2013

Semifinal showdowns

No. 9 Pioneer travels to Carroll; Caston hosts Frontier

(Continued)

The Cougars have gotten healthy at the right time of the season. They got a big boost when junior quarterback Jared Miller returned from a stress fracture that sidelined him the first seven weeks. Miller’s return meant that standout junior wide receiver Brandon Dillon could move back to his more natural spot on the field.

“When [Miller] went down, not only did we lose our quarterback be lost our No. 1 receiver because he had to go under center,” Keown said. “One of the nice things about getting Jared back is now Brandon can get back to where he’s comfortable. Last week he had 125 receiving yards and shown what he can do for us. It gets people out of the box. The teams we played the last few weeks, everybody had their nose in the box.”

Keown noted that in the 3.5 games Miller has played this year he’s thrown for over 500 yards. Miller missed most of last year with an injury as well.

“He’s had two of the freakiest injuries I’ve ever come across. Honestly it’s a testament to his toughness that he’s back for us,” Keown said. “He could easily have been a 1,200-, 1,500-yard passer this year. I truly believe that. He’s special throwing the ball.”

The Cougars are coming off of back-to-back wins at North White the last two weeks, 26-6 and 40-22.

“We’re as healthy as we’ve been right now. We’re playing some of our better football. I don’t know if it’s good enough but we’re playing some of our best football all season,” Keown said.

Jaden Reneau leads the Cougars on the ground with 1,223 yards and 11 TDs.

Last year the Cougars gave the Panthers a scare in a sectional game, leading 14-0 at halftime in a semifinal game in Flora. But Joey Miller rushed for 187 yards and five touchdowns on 21 carries in the second half to lead the Panthers to a 35-21 win.

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