LUTCHER - Ruston Matherne threw for four touchdowns and ran for a fifth as Lutcher routed visiting Benton 48-6 as the Class 4A playoffs began Friday night.
Matherne finished a dazzling 20-for-24 for 278 yards and the four TDs, and he also ran 11 times for 86 yards and the other score.
Daniel Taylor added 161 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries and also caught five passes for 109 yards and two touchdowns as Lutcher (10-1) totaled a balanced 540 yards of offense - with 262 on the ground - and scored in all four quarters.
Despite 106 yards on 22 carries from Dat Turks, Benton (5-6) was held to 282 yards, including 65 in the air, and lost two fumbles. Lutcher held Benton?s Zach Pierson, a 1,000-yard rusher, to 30 yards on three carries.
Lutcher, the No. 3 seed as well as the third-ranked team in 4A, will next travel to No. 19 Washington-Marion of Lake Charles, a 35-8 winner over No. 14 Plaquemine.
After Matherne opened the scoring with an 18-yard keeper for a 7-0 lead with 7:30 left in the first quarter, Benton closed within 7-6 on Jordan Shaffer’s 4-yard TD pass to Alex Martin with 3:20 remaining in the quarter.
Benton never scored again.
After a 1-yard TD run by Taylor gave Lutcher a 14-6 lead with 1:20 left in the first quarter.
Matherne then threw TD passes of 40 and 8 yards to Taylor. The first, with 3:50 left in the first half, gave the Bulldogs a 21-6 halftime lead. The second gave Lutcher a 27-6 lead heading into the final quarter.
Lutcher tacked on three touchdowns in the fourth quarter.
First, Matherne completed a 69-yard touchdown pass to Dorian Semien. Then, Taylor broke off a 78-yard touchdown run with 6:20 left in the game. And finally, Matherne found Sully Martin on a 20-yard touchdown pass with 3:50 remaining in the game.