[By Josh Havard, Special to ETSN.fm]

ENNIS -- The Lufkin Panthers edged ever closer to a playoff spot without even taking the field Friday night as a simple coin toss went their way for an official 2-0 win over the Ennis Lions in District 16-5A "action."

After waiting out a lengthy lightning delay, the teams eventually elected to flip a coin to decide the victor. When it went in Lufkin's favor, the Panthers got a much-needed spot in the win column.

The coin toss was just the capper to a long day for the Panthers, who didn't even step onto the field for a snap.

With heavy rain pelting the area, Lufkin struggled just to make it to the stadium. In fact, a secondary bus with the trainers and other personnel was still stuck in traffic as the Panthers headed back to Lufkin.

When the team got to the stadium, most of the rain had left the area, although lingering lightning caused the teams to stay in their locker rooms, anxiously awaiting a game that would never be played.

Per 16-5A rules, the game would need to kick off before 10 p.m. in order to be played. When lightning hit the field at approximately 9:20 p.m., it was impossible for the teams to be ready for action by that deadline.

That left school officials and coaches meeting to decide whether to make up the contest.

With heavy rain expected on Saturday, the teams opted against trying to push back the game a day. They also elected against a possible Monday game that could have caused other conflicts.

The final option was a coin flip to decide the winner of the contest, which Lufkin eventually won to move within a single spot of advancing to the postseason.

Lufkin is now 5-3 on the season and 4-1 in district with the decision. Meanwhile Ennis fell to 4-4 overall and 3-2 in district.

The Panthers will return to action on Friday night when they host the Corsicana Tigers.