Even with a share of the District 8-5A title on the line, Landry-Walker was playing “very uninspired football” in the first half against East Jefferson, Charging Buccaneers coach Emmanuel Powell said.
Running back Tevin Bush took it upon himself to fix that. Bush broke loose for a 61-yard touchdown on Landry-Walker’s first play of the second half, and propelling it to a 32-7 victory Friday night at Joe Yenni Stadium.
It was the fifth consecutive victory for the Charging Bucs (7-2, 5-1), keeping them in a three-way tie for first place with Ehret and Chalmette heading into next week’s season finale against West Jefferson. East Jefferson (2-6, 1-5) ends the season against rival Bonnabel, which beat the Warriors last season.
“We didn’t have a great first half, so we wanted to come out explosive and give the ball to people who are going to make plays,” said Bush, who had 112 yards rushing and 92 receiving. “The (touchdown) play was kind of quick. Our slot receiver, Kaleb Anderson made a great block, and I just exploded through the hole.”
That gave the Bucs a 20-0 lead. Then, three plays into the fourth quarter, Bush made a diving catch of a 39-yard pass from quarterback Keytoan Thompson at the East Jefferson 16. Thompson later scored on a 16-yard run at 9:33 of the third, increasing the margin to 26-0.
“We started executing,” Powell said. “When you play the way we were playing, sometimes you don’t deserve to win, sometimes you’re just the better team that day.
“Tevin is exciting. Every week, we put in plays just for Tevin. We put some points on the board, and the kids started having fun.”
Thompson, playing just his second game after returning from an injury, ran for 83 yards and two touchdowns and completed 10 of 15 passes for 238 yards. His final throw was a slant pass that receiver Khalil Williams broke for a 91-yard touchdown with 7: 43 left in the game. It answered a 91-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by East Jefferson’s Quavante Brooks.
Landry-Walker led 12-0 at halftime, but the Buccaneers had four turnovers, including two fumbles and an interception by Thompson.
However, he had 67 yards rushing on eight carries, including a 1-yard sneak that capped the game’s first possession, a 61-yard, eight-play drive.
The play that gave Landry-Walker some breathing room, was an interception and 70-yard return by cornerback Corinne Harris at 2:31 of the first quarter.
Thompson made a big play that would have set up Landry-Walker for another score. With the ball at the Warriors’ 41, he broke several tackles on his way to a 36 yard run to the 5. However, he was stripped of the ball from behind by Brooks, a defensive back, who then got up, retrieved the ball in the end zone and returned it to the 27.
The Bucs were threatening again on their next possession after Bush ran 46 yards on a screen play to the East Jeff 17 two minutes before halftime. However, five plays later, Thompson gained three yards to the 5 but fumbled with 36 seconds left.