GEISMAR - Dutchtown used a steady diet of big running plays to jump on visiting Donaldsonville on Friday night and looked like it would coast to an easy victory. The Griffins went into halftime with a 35-8 lead.
However, the Tigers, led by quarterback Devin Breaux, had other ideas and made the Griffins sweat out a 35-22 win.
“When you go into the half up 35-8, you sub out and feel good about your team,” said Dutchtown coach Benny Said. “I’ll admit I was nervous on the sideline in the second half. I’ll take the blame for that. We have some things we have to work on.”
Dutchtown cruised early. The Griffins’ Austen Brown had three first-half touchdowns on runs of 12, 3 and 9 yards, respectively, before halftime. Brown had 11 carries for 87 yards at the half. Quarterback Mason Nickens had eight carries for 77 yards and Landon Collins had 71 yards on four carries, one of which was a 10-yard TD run. Antoine Margras chipped in a 13-yard TD run and had 45 yards on four carries. Margas finished with 111 yards on 15 carries.
Trailing 6-0, Donaldsonville hit a big play on its second drive when Devin Breaux hit a streaking Jaquel Grant on the right sideline for a 60-yard TD bomb. Tre Brown ran in the two-point conversion and the Tigers were up 8-6. That lead was short-lived as the Griffins scored on four of their next six possessions.
However, Breaux and the Tigers were down big at the half, but they were not without fight. Breaux finished with 355 passing yards, 2 TDs passing and one running.
“I feel great,” said Donaldsonville coach Terrance Williams. “We wanted to play with the big boys. We wanted to compete. My guys fought until the end.
“We have two great receivers and a quarterback who can move and throw. We battled the No. 2 team in the state and played hard.”
Grant finished with 12 catches for 163 yards and Leondre James had 130 yards on eight catches. Each scored a touchdown.
Donaldsonville was responsible for all the scoring in the second half. They struck in the third quarter on a big play when Breaux hit Leondre James on a 75-yard pass play with 2:12 left in the third quarter.
Breaux scored in the fourth quarter on a 3-yard run.
Dutchtown, of District 5-5A, improves to 2-0. Class 3A Donaldsonville drops to 0-2.
The Griffins built their lead on their first drive. An 18-yard run, followed by a 16-yard run by quarterback Mason Nickens set up Landon Collins for a 10-yard TD run. Collins finished with four carries for 71 yards.
The next time the Griffins got the ball, they marched to a nine-play, 68-yard TD drive that ended when Brown scored from 12 yards out.
The Griffins defense held Donaldsonville to 6 yards and a punt on the next drive.
With the starters still in, Dutchtown took the ball on its 44 and went six plays for a score. The big play as was a 47-yard run by Collins.
“We have to get better in all phases,” Saia said. “They have some playmakers.
“That quarterback (Breaux) can make plays with his arm and his feet.”