Bayou Lacombe wins opener

Published 1:13 pm Friday, March 11, 2022

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By Scott Meyer

Special to the Daily News

The Bayou Lacombe Cardinals won its opener against the South Alabama Dolphins, 29-12, in a road game last Saturday.

After the teams battled to a 0-0 tie in the first quarter, the Cardinals were able to get on the scoreboard with 13:33 left in the second period. Bayou Lacombe drove 50 yards on 12 plays to grab the early lead. Kicker Lance Foster’s (Duncanville High) 34-yard field put the Cardinals on the scoreboard.

On the Dolphins ensuing drive Cardinals, defensive back Markus Conerly intercepted Cam Westry at the Bayou Lacombe 15-yard line on a long pass attempt. Bayou Lacombe went right to work going on a 10-play, 85 yard drive that was capped off when Jervious Epherson (Northshore High School) found Darrin Airline (Independence High Magnet School) on a 39-yard scoring strike. Epherson connected with four different receivers to do most of the damage on the drive. Foster’s extra point increased the lead to 10-0 with 4:39 left in the second. Conerly is a Franklinton High School graduate.

After a Dolphin’s penalty on the extra point attempt, the Cardinals attempted an onside kick that was unsuccessful. South Alabama started their drive with good field position near midfield. After a quarterback change the Dolphins drove 52 yards on seven plays to break into the scoring column. Carl Davis plunged in from 1-yard out. An unsuccessful two-point conversion attempt left the score at 10-6 with 1:53 remaining before the break.

After the kickoff, Bayou Lacombe looked to increase their lead with another scoring drive. Epherson led the way, hitting Airline on 20 and 25-yard strikes setting up Bayou Lacombe at the Dolphins 5. The Cardinals were forced to a field goal attempt that was blocked and returned for the touchdown late in the half.

South Alabama’s two-point conversion attempt was spoiled when linebacker Garret Lebouef (South Terrebonne High School) disrupted the pass to end the conversion attempt. South Alabama ahead for the first time just before the half at 12-10.

In the second half, Bayou Lacombe would regain the lead after defensive end Ted Conrad (Fontainebleau High School) sacked Davis and forced a fumble with Kobe Crain recovering at the Dolphins’ 40. It took the Cardinals five plays to travel 40 yards to regain the lead. Running back Lawrence Robinson capped off the drive with an 8-yard touchdown run straight through the heart of the defense. After the extra point attempt was blocked, Bayou Lacombe led 16-12 with 3:04 left in the third. Crain and Robinson are Franklinton High School graduates.

On the Dolphins ensuing possession, South Alabama again tested the no fly zone only to be intercepted by Casterdale Collier (Hammond High Magnet School) for a third time with the Cardinals taking over at the Dolphins 45. After a short run by running back Arthur Ashton (Hammond High Magnet School), South Alabama was flagged for a personal foul moving the ball to the 25. After the penalty, Epherson hit wide receiver Archie Ambo (Northshore High School) on a perfectly executed scoring strike from 25 yards out. After an unsuccessful two-point conversion, the Cardinals led 22-12 with 12:32 left in the contest.

After the Cardinals intercepted its fourth pass of the night, Bayou Lacombe called upon their second signal caller in Chris Penton (Lakeshore High School) to lead the way. Penton guided the Cardinals on a six-play, 61-yard drive with Ashton capping off the drive with a 1-yard scoring run to finish off the scoring on the evening. Foster added the extra point to put Bayou Lacombe ahead 29-12.

Defensively the Cardinals allowed just 69 total yards and forced five turnovers including two interceptions by Conerly and Casterdale Collier The defense also harassed the Dolphins quarterbacks all evening picking up six sacks with Abraham Dawson (Salmen High School) leading the way with three.

Offensively, Epherson led the way completing 16-of-26 for 218 yards and two scores with one interception.

Airline led the eight pass catchers with 110 yards on five catches and one score.

Ambo added three catches for 51 yards and his lone score.

Ashton led all rushers with 52 yards on 13 carries.

Robinson added 40 yards on 8 carries. Total plays were 57 for 369 yards.

The Dolphins Davis ended the night  7-of-15 for 67 yards and three interceptions.

WR John Moffett led their four receivers with two catches for 36 yards.

Westry led all Dolphins rushers with 11 yards on three carries.

Total plays 39 total yards 69. Dolphins quarterbacks were sacked six times for minus 32 yards.

South Alabama travels to take on the Georgia Cobras next.

The Bayou Lacombe Cardinals open their home schedule against Pike County Titans at Lakeshore High School on March 12.