STEM -- Louisburg had an opportunity to earn the Northern Carolina Conference's top Class 1-A seed for the state football playoffs as part of Monday's regular season-ending showdown at Granville Central.
But the homestanding Panthers had other ideas in a duel between the NCC's lone 1-A squads.
The Warriors fell behind early and never recovered during a 42-8 loss to Granville Central that now puts Louisburg's postseason hopes in limbo.
LHS, coached by Dontae Lassiter, will learn its playoff fate this coming weekend when brackets are released by the North Carolina High School Athletic Association.
The Warriors, with a 4-7 overall record and a 1-5 NCC slate, were listed as a No. 11 seed on the Class 1-AA level during the latest playoff projections by the www.highschoolot.com website.
Louisburg had a chance to gain an automatic berth with a win on Monday, but it wasn't meant to be.
The Warriors took the opening kickoff and were immediately held to a three-and-out by the GC defense.
Following a short punt, Granville Central (8-1, 6-1) needed just one play to score as quarterback Brandin Glenn took a simple sneak and turned it into a 46-yard untouched score that gave the Panthers the lead for good at the 10:01 mark of the opening stanza of action.
LHS' problems continued on its next series as a fumble was recovered by the Panthers.
Three plays later, Granville Central's Jed Evans scooted in off the right side from 17 yards out, and GC was rolling at 14-0.
Some strong running from Drequan Dickerson helped the Warriors pick up two first downs on their next series while moving into Panthers' territory for the first time.
But a fumble ended the march as Granville Central took over once again at midfield.
The Panthers drove into the red zone but eventually settled for a field goal attempt that was blocked by the Warriors -- and scooped up by Dickerson.
Dickerson returned the ball deep into GC territory, only to see part of the run called back due to a penalty.
LHS had possession at the 50-yard line and ran three plays before opting to go for it on fourth down.
But Xavier Jones was stopped one yard short of the mark, and Granville Central had the ball again at its own 41-yard line.
GC eventually faced what appeared to be an insurmountable first-and-26 situation, only to retrieve the yardage and more on just one snap as Glenn found a wide-open Brandon Peace for a 45-yard TD strike that increased the Panthers' cushion to 21-0 just 7:05 in front of intermission.
LHS' next march ended with a punt that was returned by Evans all the way back to the Warriors' 35-yard line.
Deandre Moore then went in up the middle from 22 yards out for another score that gave the Panthers a 27-0 cushion that would hold up at halftime in the Northern Carolina Conference game.
Pictured (Below): TOUGH TO BRING DOWN. Louisburg High School's Drequan Dickerson (with ball) tries to shake a tackle attempt during Monday night's road football showdown against Northern Carolina Conference opponent Granville Central. (Times photos by Geoff Neville)