LAFAYETTE — The University of Louisiana at Lafayette football team spent much of the week going over the recent history of their series with Louisiana Tech, but the intended goal was never to make history repeat itself.
The Bulldogs rolled over the Cajuns 48-20 on their homefield to continue their recent domination in the series. It was the Bulldogs’ seventh straight victory over the Cajuns, most of which have come in blowout fashion.
The Bulldogs didn’t find the going easy against the Cajuns defense as the game started, but all it took was one big play to light the fuse.
Late in the first quarter, Cajuns punter Daniel Cadona pulled out his sand wedge and pinned the Bulldogs at their own 1-yard line thanks to an outstanding effort from senior defensive back Corey Trim. But the Bulldogs were unfazed.
Junior running back Kenneth Dixon faked out linebacker Trae Johnson in the hole, and the entire rest of the Cajuns defense was sucked in. Once Dixon got past Johnson, he had nothing but green grass in front of him.
He took off, beating cornerback Dominick Jones in a 99-yard race to the end zone. Dixon finished with 12 carries for 184 yards and a pair of scores.
The Cajuns responded by showing off their own prowess running the football. Taking over at their own 20-yard line, the Cajuns marched 80 yards downfield on 10 plays, nine of which came on the ground.
Senior quarterback Terrance Broadway rushed four times for 47 yards on the drive, and three of those rushing attempts picked up first downs. Alonzo Harris punched it in for a six-yard touchdown on the first play of the second quarter, keeping his legs churning to break through a few arm tackle attempts.
It looked like the heavily-favored Cajuns were ready to assert their dominance, but just the opposite happened. The Bulldogs found the big plays when they needed them.
After Harris was stuffed for no gain on fourth and one from the Louisiana Tech 39-yard line, the Bulldogs took control of the game. It started with a 19-yard completion from Tech quarterback Cody Sokol to Trent Taylor on third and 12 midway through the second quarter.
That was the first of seven straight pass completions for Sokol, who gutted the Cajuns pass defense for 295 yards on the night. Sokol easily guided the Bulldogs down field by targeting the soft middle of the Cajuns defense.
After converting the second third down of the night, Sokol fired down the seam to Hunter Lee for a 16-yard touchdown to give the Bulldogs a lead they would never relinquish.
When the Cajuns looked like they might be able to respond, forcing the Bulldogs into a third and long deep in their own territory late in the first half, Sokol dropped a perfect pass over Dominick Jones outstretched hands into Paul Turner’s mitts, and Turner turned on the jets. The 55-yard gain set up a field goal with 10 seconds remaining in the first half.
Turner’s 55-yard grab and Dixon’s 99-yard run made up more than half of the Bulldogs’ 305 first-half yards. The big plays would continue in the second half.
Any notion that the Cajuns would be able to turn it around in the second half were seriously tested when Corey Trim fell down while covering Sterling Griffin’s fly route down the sideline on the second play of the second half.
Sokol’s pass hit Griffin in stride, and Griffin took it 78 yards for a score in the beginning of a nightmare second half for the Cajuns.
It was the Bulldogs’ defense that delivered the dagger. Defensive back Xavier Woods intercepted a tipped pass from Broadway and weaved through Cajuns offensive players, taking it 46 yards to the house to give the Bulldogs a 31-7 lead.
Tech did not let up, leaving its offensive starters in until late while scoring a couple more touchdowns to officially make it a blowout.
Cajuns backup quarterback Brooks Haack threw a touchdown to Gabe Fuselier on the final play of the game to provide the final score.
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