Nov 23

This Day in #ReitzFootball History (Nov. 23): Panthers upset Central to win 1923 city title


The 1923 Panthers were the school’s first championship team proudly presents “This Day in #ReitzFootball History,” as we look back through almost 100 years of The Mighty Panthers.

On November 23:

  • Overall: 1-0 (1 game)
  • No games played at Reitz Bowl
  • At Bosse Field (1923): 1-0
  • On Friday (1923): 1-0
  • No games played on Saturday

1923: Reitz 7, Central 3 (Tiny Ten Conference game)

In the only game Reitz ever played on Nov. 23, the young Panthers, in their fifth season of the sport, beat Central for the first time.

All the scoring came in the second quarter. Reitz struck first when Turnham recovered a Bear fumble in the end zone, with Alexander booting the extra point. Central’s McIntosh (the article did not list first names) nailed a 15-yard field goal as the first half expired.

“Entering the game with Central high at Bosse field yesterday afternoon as the “underdogs”, and considered without a chance to win, the Reitz high gridiron warriors covered themselves with mud and glory, and outfought the Brown and Gold warriors completely, winning the city championship 7 to 3, in one of the hardest fought games seen here for a long time.

Central tried desperately in the second half, after they had been battled off their feet in the first two periods, to come back and score a touchdown that would win, but the Purple and Gold [Reitz’ school colors in the early days] fought just as desperately.”

In the fourth quarter, McIntosh was stopped by the Panthers five yards shy of the end zone as time expired.

“When the game ended Central had the ball on Reitz’s five-yard line. Reitz fans stood astounded when the final whistle blew. They seemed for a moment unable to realize that their team had won. Suddenly a great shout arose as the truth dawned on the hundreds of fans. The score board registered three minutes to play, and they were unaware that the game was over. Nearly 1,500 Reitz students and fans formed an immense parade on Main street last night, headed by the high school band, and snake danced their way down Main street, tieing [sic] up traffic for several blocks. A big bonfire that was visible all over the city, was started on Forest Hills in celebration for the great victory.”

– Evansville Courier & Press, Nov. 24, 1923

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