It took a while for the Tiger offense to get started Friday night against the Higgins Hurricanes. But once they did, they were hard to stop, scoring 22 fourth quarter points to storm to a 25-8 victory.
The Tiger defense forced four turnovers on the night and running back Ernest Thompson cracked the century mark with 119 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
The Tigers began the game with a promising drive led by the running of Travis Faucheaux and a 21-yard pass from quarterback Easton Melancon to tight end Cody Morales. But after a sack and an incompletion stalled the drive, kicker Craig Ford put the Tigers on the board with a 42-yard field goal.
The rest of the first half was a defensive clinic put on by the Tigers. Defensive backs Jamal Smith and Tyren Hills both snagged interceptions deep in Hahnville territory on the Hurricanes’ next two drives. But the offense could not capitalize on them before the first half ended.
The second half began with both teams sputtering on offense until Higgins finally broke through with a couple of long runs from quarterback Cedric Jackson. Then from seven yards out, running back Darrell Williams put the ball in the end zone and ran for a two-point conversion, giving the Hurricanes an 8-3 lead with just a minute and a half left in the third quarter.
But from that point on, the Hahnville offense was unstoppable. It began when Melancon found wide receiver Ronny Green for a 25-yard gain on a third and long. Green led all Tigers with 62 yards on three catches. Faucheaux and Thompson then alternated runs until Thompson was the one to take it in from the three-yard line. He would go on to run for the two-point conversion as well, to give the Tigers an 11-8 lead.
A good kickoff by the Hahnville special teams then forced the Hurricanes to start from their own five-yard line. A couple of plays later, Jackson fumbled the ball and Tiger defensive back Anthony Mott fell on it to give Hahnville the ball at the Higgins 10-yard line.
The Tigers then only needed two plays of five yards each to get the ball in the end zone. Faucheaux took the first one and Thompson smashed the second one in to give Hahnville an 18-8 lead with eight minutes left in the game.
Kick returner Lyndon Hawkins took the ensuing kickoff 67 yards for Higgins, but their drive came to a halt on a fourth down that saw linebacker Gabe Taylor taking Jackson down for a loss.
Again, the Tiger offense only needed two plays to put the ball in the end zone. But this time, the second play was a 54-yard run by Thompson that found him breaking tackles and winning a sprint to the goal line. That put the Tigers up 25-8.
Higgins tried once more to mount a scoring drive, but Hahnville defensive back Jerquinick Sandolph had other plans when he intercepted Jackson and sealed the victory for the Tigers.
With the win, the Tigers improve to 4-4 on the season and 2-1 in district. Next Friday they will face off against the John Ehret Patriots at home at 7 p.m.
East St. John 20 Destrehan 0
East St. John scored on the first play of the game and never looked back as they shutout the Destrehan Wildcats 20-0 on Friday night.
With the loss, Destrehan fell to 0-3 in district play while East St. John tightened their grip on the top spot by improving to 3-0.
Deszman Broussard got things started for ESJ by returning the opening kick off 99 yards for a score. The visiting Wildcats would miss the extra point, but quickly had a 6-0 lead.
After the Wildcats failed to pick up a first down on their first possession, East St. John again made another huge special teams play. This time it was Xavier Lewis who fielded the punt and returned it 52 yards to the Destrehan 3-yard line. Though ESJ would be penalized five yards for a false start, quarterback Darion Monroe found Rashad Green open in the end zone a play later to put his squad up 12-0.
Destrehan got into ESJ territory for the first time midway through the first quarter, but Donovon Isom’s pass was picked off at the East St. John 40. Destrehan’s defense would hold the visting Wildcats and Destrehan got one more chance to get on the board a few minutes later.
However, Daniel Cimino’s 50-yard field goal attempt fell short with 52 seconds left until the second quarter.
East St. John scored their final touchdown early in the second on a 16-yard run by Monroe. Destrehan had a chance to score a touchdown with only seconds remaining before the half, but Isom’s pass was intercepted in the end zone.