Big plays early hurt Bogalusa in loss

Published 11:03 am Monday, September 11, 2023

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By Chris Kinkaid

Bogalusa allowed two long touchdown passes in Slidell’s first three offensive snaps and trailed 21-0 after the first quarter in a 41-12 loss to the Tigers at L.V. McGinty Sr. Stadium on Slidell High School’s campus Thursday night.

Bogalusa punted to start the game.

Slidell took possession at its own 26 and scored on the first play when Zayvien Bartee connected with Corey Cousin on a 74 yard pass. Austin Buell made the extra point for a 7-0 lead with 9:54 left in the first quarter.

Bogalusa turned the ball over on downs on its next possession and Slidell scored two plays later when Bartee hit Ramelo Howard on a 53 yarder for a 14-0 advantage after Buell’s point after at the 8:23 mark.

Bogalusa turned the ball over when Slidell’s Torey Kitchens recovered the fumble.

Four plays later, Trevel Watts ran in from the 1. Buell added the extra point and it was 21-0 with 6:38 on the clock. The big play came on a reverse that Dwayne Mills took 43 yards to the 7. That was Bogalusa’s first of three turnovers in the first quarter and they had five for the game. Slidell scored 13 points off of those turnovers.

‘We had three turnovers in the first quarter. You can’t do that against a good team, so they did a tremendous job of forcing turnovers, but anytime you get three turnovers — I felt like we had a chance to get back in the game,’ Bogalusa coach Cyril Crutchfield said. ‘We were down two touchdowns. We dropped a ball that would’ve really put us within a score (in the first half). We’ve gotta just continue to work to get better. We’ve got a long way to go, but they’ve got a long season ahead us. When you put everything in prospective, this time last year, we had the identical record, 1-1, so we’ve just gotta build off of it.’

Last year, Bogalusa started 1-1 with a 44-21 win over Franklinton and a 24-18 setback against Slidell and went on a seven-game winning streak that included a District 7-3A title.

After the 21-0 start, Bogalusa trimmed it to 21-6 in the second quarter.

The Lumberjacks embarked on a 17-play, 60-yard drive that took 6:08 off the clock that ended with Ashton Levi running 2 yards for the score. The extra point was blocked and it was 21-6 with 3:19 to go in it first half and it stayed that way through halftime.

Bogalusa got within nine at 21-12 when Anthony Sheridan intercepted a pass and returned it about 17 yards to Slidell’s 23.

Bogalusa capitalized five plays later when Levi ran 9 yards for a touchdown. The two-point conversation was no good, but Bogalusa had the deficit down to 21-12 with 7:01 on the clock.

Bogalusa’s defense forced a punt, but Mills intercepted a pass on the first play of the ensuing drive and Slidell scored two plays after the pick with Bartee running 32 yards. Dyron Jackson blocked the extra point, keeping it 27-12 with 4:27 left in the third.

Slidell scored two touchdowns in the fourth period.

Watts tallied on an 11-yard run at the 4:16 mark. Buell made the extra point.

Aiden Young posted the final score with 57 seconds left on a 24-yard rush. Brennen Heim made the extra point to finalize the scoring at 41-12.

Both teams are 1-1 and both will be on the road on Sept. 15.

Bogalusa will head to Salmen, while Slidell travels to Central of Baton Rouge.