- Game Recap
- Eric Richey
- September 01, 2017 - 12:05am
WALKER, La. - The game was played in Walker instead of Reserve.
It was played on Thursday instead of Friday.
But when the dust, or in this case, the lightening had settled, it was Riverside Academy that was the defending state champion on Fright night that was able to make the adjustments, handily defeating Southern Lab 54-0 in the season opener for both schools. The dominant performance was an impressive way for first-year Riverside head coach Chris Lachney to pick up win No.1 with the Rebels.
"This win isn't about me, it's about our team and our ability to deal with distractions and curveballs," said Lachney, who spent the past five years as Riverside's defensive coordinator. "That's a way bigger accomplishment than me getting a win."
Riverside opened quick with three first-quarter touchdowns. Jordan Loving led the way with two of his three touchdown passes in the game coming in the first quarter, both to Jalen Banks. The senior quarterback also added a 1-yard touchdown run as the Rebels shot out to a 21-0 lead.
The heavy rainstorm that was feared hit just at the end of the first quarter and when lightening was spotted in the area, the game was delayed.
After more than an hour delay, the game resumed and Riverside picked up right where it left off. Three more touchdowns and a safety ensued and by halftime Riverside led 44-0. The second quarter scoring barrage came in a variety of ways, starting with an 80-yard touchdown pass from Loving to Jeremiah Bigham, giving Riverside a 28-0 nothing lead.
Southern Lab, a shadow of the team that won back-to-back Division IV state championships, let up a safety when a high snap went sailing out of the end zone.
On the ensuing free-kick the onslaught continued when Kash Foley went 45 yards for the touchdown return. A Jeremy Gibson 10-yard touchdown closed the flurry of Riverside's first-half scoring.
"I'm not sure why it was so one-sided," said Lachney. "I know that our team played a good football game against a very good and talented football team. I'm sure the distractions of the last two weeks (both state championships forfeited for recruiting violations and head coach Marcus Randall fired) had an affect on them. My hat is off to coach Darrell Asberry and Southern Lab for playing hard and representing their school and community in a positive way. I'm sure they will pick up the pieces from these past two weeks and continue to improve as a team and move forward as a program."
After a scoreless third quarter Riverside got a 33-yard field goal from Colton Wilson (who was 7 for 7 on extra points) and a 75-yard punt return for a score by Garland Robertson Jr., to close out the scoring.
The game was originally scheduled for a Friday night kickoff at Riverside, but concerns over the field conditions led to the change in venue.