THIBODAUX — The Nicholls State football team finished camp Saturday morning with its final preseason scrimmage — and much like last week’s scrimmage, the defense had a strong showing, limiting the offense to 248 yards while racking up eight sacks and one interception.
The defense allowed just 60 rushing yards on 31 carries, helped by a large amount of sack yardage.
Defensive lineman Cole Frazier made a living in the backfield all day, leading the team with two sacks. Linebacker Seth Keller had the lone turnover for the defense, intercepting a Tuskani Figaro pass in the first series of the scrimmage, and linebacker Ronnie Walker led the team with six tackles.
The Colonels quarterbacks combined for 188 passing yards and two touchdowns on 20 of 36 attempts. Beaux Hebert paced the offense, completing 8 of 11 throws for 83 yards and both scores. Figaro was 7 of 14 for 57 yards; Kalen Henderson went 3 of 9 for 28 yards; and Dash Duncan completed both of his passes for 20 yards.
Hebert also led the team in rushing, accounting for 21 yards on six carries.
While most of the scrimmage featured the same scripted format, a new wrinkle was added Saturday with the team conducting six drives — three starting from the home 25-yard line and three from the visitor 25-yard line. In the first three drives, the defense allowed just one first down.
The Colonels will now focus on their season opener at 1 p.m. Aug. 30 at Air Force. The game will stream live on ESPN3.
QBs STRIKE EARLY IN SCRIMMAGE: The much-anticipated wait to see new quarterback Daniel Sams and redshirt freshman receiver Kent Shelby didn’t take long to impress the hundreds of fans in Cowboy Stadium during the first scrimmage of preseason camp.
On his first play from scrimmage Saturday, Sams, a Kansas State transfer, launched a pass over the middle that connected with tight end R.J. Walters for a 51-yard gain. The very next play, he put his feet to work and scampered in for the score from 24 yards.
Shelby made an acrobatic catch in coverage in the back corner of the end zone for an 18-yard score.
Five quarterbacks combined to complete 21 of 47 passes for 396 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Four of the QBs — Sams, Tyler Bolfing, Grant Ashcraft and Will Briscoe — all took snaps with the first unit against the first defense. All four marched the team down for scores.
DEMONS GO THROUGH 134 PLAYS: A sensational leaping catch in the corner of the end zone by a tightly covered Ed Eagan capped an explosive two-hour, 134-play football scrimmage Saturday morning for Northwestern State.
The scrimmage featured nine touchdowns and two diving interceptions by sophomore safety Adam Jones.
The Demons, who open their season at home Aug. 28 against Missouri State, finished their second full week of preseason camp. They ran 106 plays from scrimmage with a “thud” tempo, which doesn’t allow live tackling.
Northwestern State also got in 28 special-teams snaps in the situational scrimmage, which included 11-on-11 competition on the goal line, in the red zone, in a two-minute scenario and in overtime.
Freshman running back Ronald Green scored on runs of 1 and 20 yards, topping 11 Demons ball carriers with 56 yards on nine rushes.
Junior Daniel Taylor scored from the 9, while freshman Nigel Dora had a 2-yard TD run.
Adkins, the returning starting quarterback, went 16 of 25 for 170 yards with two interceptions. He threw for touchdowns of 4 yards to sophomore De’Mard Llorens and the scrimmage-ending OT score to Eagan. Sophomore Daniel Hazlewood tossed a 3-yard touchdown to freshman Cameron Lazare.