BREAUX BRIDGE — It wasn’t exciting or flashy, but Notre Dame coach Lewis Cook said the Pioneers’ hard-fought 20-0 win over Breaux Bridge is what he has come to expect in this rivalry.
“We knew it would be a defensive standoff,” Cook said. “We know how it is when we come to Breaux Bridge. It’s going to be hard and physical. And it was.”
The Pioneers were efficient in the passing game, effective in the running game, and staunch on defense. Cook said he thought his defense’s effort was outstanding.
“Our defense was all over (Breaux Bridge),” Cook said. “I know how frustrated (Breaux Bridge) must have been. We played lights out and swarmed all over them. We had a few moments offensively, but not a whole lot.”
With 3:35 to play in the first quarter, Notre Dame’s Justin Guidry had one of those moments when took his first carry 80 yards for a touchdown to put the Pios up 7-0. Guidry also had his second carry called back — a would-be 68-yard touchdown — because of a penalty.
Cook said they’ve been hoping Guidry would tap into some of his potential, especially with Lance Bertrand currently out. Cook said he hopes a game like this can springboard Guidry into a big season.
“It’s only his second time to start, and it was really nice to see that,” Cook said. “The more he plays, the better he is going to get. We needed it for the team, but now he’s going to have the confidence and knowing he has those capabilities will be big for us. With Lance out, to have Justin step up is big for us.
A strange play in the second quarter resulted in Notre Dame’s second touchdown. Breaux Bridge quarterback Drake Guidry attempted a backward pass inside his 10-yard line. Notre Dame’s Shea Zaunbrecher scooped up the lateral and took it in from 6 yards out, giving the Pios a 14-0 lead.
Breaux Bridge couldn’t get going offensively, The Tigers didn’t get their first and only first down until 1:00 was left in the third quarter. The Pios fumbled twice in the fourth quarter, both recovered by Breaux Bridge. The Tigers couldn’t capitalize.
Cook said he would have liked to get quarterback Joe Faulk more passing attempts — he had just six for the game — but the game didn’t allow it. Overall, Cook said he was pleased with Faulk’s development.
“The ball is wet, and we had the lead,” Cook said. “I kept it pretty close to the vest at the end. I didn’t want to let them back in the game. Hopefully we will have a couple of games where we can air it out, but you can see Joe’s running ability. We’ll continue to feature that and hopefully get him some chances to throw.”