In the moments after his team’s season-opening 40-7 rout of Lusher, Country Day coach Joe Chango wouldn’t admit he was totally happy with the Cajuns’ victory. About the only thing that went wrong for Country Day on Friday? Cramping.
“That’s a bad concern for us because of our numbers,” Chango said. “We’ve got to make sure guys get healthy and make sure they stay on the field. We got a lot of work to still do.”
Behind a methodical, punishing offense and clamp-down defense, the Cajuns made things look easy at Lusher.
“I just hope we’d come out and play hard,” Chango said. “I don’t expect any scoring like we did tonight. Could’ve been that way for us as it was for them if we don’t play the way we wanted to play.”
Running back Jase Griffin was a workhorse, carrying the ball 29 times for 110 yards.
“We’re primarily a passing team, so when I get the ball I know we’re winning and trying to run off time,” Griffin said. “Doesn’t really matter to me, as long as we’re winning the game.”
Things didn’t seem so easy early, however, as Lusher started quickly. Ryan Theyard nabbed an interception on the first play of the game, though the Lions failed to capitalize on the ensuing drive. After stopping the Cajuns again, Simeon Thomas sprinted 43 yards on a punt return for a touchdown to put Lusher up 7-0.
That was the end of good things for Lusher on the night.
Country Day was suffocating for the rest of the game, on both sides of the ball. They scored on three of the next four drives — two on touchdown runs by Michael Hickey and Jase Griffin, along with a 9-yard touchdown pass from Kerut to Charlie Livaudais — to grab a commanding 21-7 lead.
Two drives later, an intentional grounding penalty in the end zone only made matters worse for the Lions, increasing the gap to 23-7. Three plays later, Kerut hit Chandler Wynne for a 49-yard touchdown to put the game out of reach with a half to play.
The second half became Griffin’s show — he carried the ball 13 times, including six times on a clock-devouring 16-play, 7:44 scoring drive that ended with a Livaudais 30-yard field goal to put the Cajuns up 33-7.
“Dude works hard,” Chango said of Griffin. “When I got here, I knew he was going to be a guy we could count on. Jase did a great job for us (Friday night). We expect that from him all through the year.”
Kerut’s 15-yard touchdown pass to Trey Harrell finished up the scoring on both sides with just under four minutes to play.
“Some guys stepped up, I’m pleased with that,” Chango said. “But we’re going to work (Saturday) and get ready for Ben Franklin.”