Railers to open new stadium at Derby

Mark Schnabel
The Kansan

The Newton High School football team will inaugurate a new stadium when the Railers travel to Derby at 7 p.m. Friday at the new Panther Stadium.

The new venue is at the location of the the former Panther Stadium, but was torn down and rebuilt in time for this season.

The game also is the season opener for the Panthers. A week one game against a school from Oklahoma was canceled.

The Railers are coming off a 10-6 loss to Andover Central on the road last week. Newton took a 6-0 lead early in the game on a pair of field goals, but Central rallied to take the lead. A late Newton drive was stopped short of the goal line.

Derby is coming off a 9-2 campaign from last season, 3-1 in league play. The Panthers finished the season on a six-game winning streak that ended with a 56-31 win over Blue Valley North in the Class 6A state finals.

Among the top returnees for the Panthers are running back Dylan Edwards, who rushed for 1,833 yards and 25 touchdowns, along with 204 receiving yards and two touchdowns; receiver Drake Thatcher, who had 315 receiving yards and six touchdowns; Andon Carpenter, who had 51 total tackles, including nine for a loss.

Derby topped Newton 43-31 last season. The Railers trailed 16-14 at the half and 30-21 after three quarters.

Mark Schnabel can be reached at mschnabel@thekansan.com