Down three quarterbacks and star defensive lineman Nelson Jenkins, no one would have blinked an eye if sixth-ranked Plaquemine came out with a sluggish performance in the regular-season finale.
Don’t tell that to coach Paul Distefano and the Green Devils. They rolled 49-21 over district foe Lutcher (4-6, 3-2) Friday night at Plaquemine High.
“We’re down to our fourth starting quarterback of the year,” Distefano said. “We probably came in to this game physically at our weakest point in the season. But I feel mentally we came in at our peak.”
A familiar name opened things up for Plaquemine (8-2, 4-1). Running back Wayne Toussant broke into the open field and ran 81 yards for the first score of the game. Toussant ended the game with eight carries for 197 yards.
“He can break it at any time,” Distefano said. “He does the little things right. He’s so familiar with the offense that he knows how to find those creases. He stepped up big.”
It didn’t take long for Plaquemine to get its second touchdown of the night. Lutcher mishandled the following kickoff and Plaquemine defensive back Bryant Jones recovered the football in the end zone to put the Green Devils up 14-0 in the first quarter.
At this point, it seemed nothing could go right for Lutcher who came into the game with a three-game win streak. On Lutcher’s following possession, Plaquemine recovered yet another fumble.
“That was it. That’s the whole game,” Lutcher coach Dwain Jenkins said of the first quarter blunders. “You hate to say that it goes down like that, but that’s truly what happened. They did what a good football team does; they made us pay for our mistakes.”
With a short field to work with, Plaquemine drove the ball downfield and running back Herman Christophe bulldozed his way in for a three-yard touchdown giving Plaquemine a 21-0 lead.
Despite the unfortunate turn of events that left Lutcher in a deep hole, the Bulldogs did not quit on the game. Lutcher quarterback Kolby Bourgeois led a strong passing attack in the second quarter. He hit his favorite receiver of the night, Gregory Clayton, in the corner of the end zone for a touchdown.
However, Plaquemine quarterback Dontayvion Wicks responded with a well-executed two-minute drive. He ended the drive rolling out and hitting receiver Percy Butler for a touchdown with 22 seconds remaining before halftime.
Lutcher came out of halftime with some more sharp passing. It was a bit of déjà vu for Bourgeois, who hit Clayton again on a toe-dragging seven-yard touchdown in the corner of the end zone. Bourgeois ended his night completing 19 passes on 32 attempts for 172 yards.
Plaquemine all of a sudden only led by a 28-14 score. However, the Green Devils shut down any hopes for a comeback with a strong running game and three unanswered touchdowns. Plaquemine ran for 385 yards on the night.
Lutcher running back Daeveon Adams added a 2-yard touchdown late in the fourth quarter, but it was too little, too late.