St. Charles Catholic led 21-8 at halftime in its District 7-3A opener at home against Donaldsonville but the Comets didn’t exactly look like the top-ranked team in Class 3A.
So, for the start of the second half, the Comets put the ball in the hands of Lazedrick Thompson.
The powerful running back, a Tulane verbal commitment, continually pounded at a tiring Tigers defense. He scored two early touchdowns in the third quarter to help set the tone in the Comets’ 49-8 victory.
“We weren’t the ‘real’ Comets in the first half. We came in at halftime and coaches really encouraged us and really got on us to come out and put the nail in the coffin,” said Thompson, who rushed for 163 yards and scored four touchdowns. Of Thompson’s total, 135 came in the second half.
“They (the Tigers) outplayed us the first half. They were hitting us harder and they were sustaining the line of scrimmage better than we were and we weren’t tackling in the secondary and along the line of scrimmage,” St. Charles coach Frank Monica said. “We didn’t jump-start ourselves until the third quarter when we realized we can’t get fancy. We needed to win it the old-fashioned way in the trenches.”
A short kickoff to open the second half gave St. Charles excellent field position at its own 47. Tackle-breaking runs of 16, 29 and 2 yards by Thompson advanced the ball to the Donaldsonville 6. Following a 5-yard change-of-pace run by Marcus Hall, who rushed for 96 yards in the game, Thompson scored from a yard out from a power-I formation to put SCC up by 20 points at 28-8.
Donaldsonville (2-4 overall, 0-1 in district) marched to the St. Charles 3-yard in but turned the ball over on downs when quarterback Devon Breaux, who was a one-man wrecking crew in the first half for the Tigers, was stopped for a 2-yard loss. Breaux rushed for 84 yards and passed for 190. Of that total, 69 of his rushing yards and 116 passing yards came in the first half as fatigue set in for the Tigers, who featured a squad of approximately 40 players.
“We know going in every week we don’t have the numbers everyone else has. They are a tough team. They are ranked No. 1 and deserve to be No. 1 and we will go back to work and get ready for next week,” Donaldsonville coach Terrance Williams said.
Thompson started five-play drive with runs of 17 and 21 yards to eventually set up a 31-yard Hall touchdown to give St. Charles a 25-8 lead.
A quick punt from deep in Tigers territory was returned to the 8-yard line by Hall. On the next play, Thompson ran wide to his left for the running back’s fourth touchdown of the game as St. Charles took a commanding 42-8 lead with 4:36 remaining in the game.
“It was a good feeling,” Thompson said of his two early scores in the third quarter. “It’s hard work from during the week paying off on Friday nights.”
Playing reserves down the stretch, the Comets added one final score on a 5-yard run by Brandon Zimmer to make it 49-8 on the first play of the fourth quarter.
Both teams tried to keep the ball away from the opposing offenses in the first half with time-consuming drives. Turnovers and mistakes by Donaldsonville proved to be the difference in allowing the Comets to take a 21-8 halftime lead.
Three plays into the opening possession of the game, Ross Authement’s interception of a Breaux pass gave St. Charles the ball at the Donaldsonville 10-yard line. Thompson got the ball twice, the second time from 6 yards out to give the Comets a quick 7-0 lead less than a minute into the game.
Donaldsonville marched from its own 18 to the SCC 20 but turned the ball over on downs when Breaux’s pass was incomplete in the end zone on fourth-and-12.
St. Charles got a break on the ensuing drive when a Tigers defender dropped an interception midway in the possession. The Comets ended up marching 80 yards with Thompson capping the drive on a 5-yard run to give St. Charles a 14-0 lead with 2:06 remaining in the opening quarter.
Pass interference in the end zone by the Comets on a fourth-and-25 play from the St. Charles 29 gave Donaldsonville a first down at the 14-yard line on the ensuing possession. Breaux’s 11-yard run around the left side on a naked bootleg and a two-point conversion pass from Breaux to Leondre James made it 14-8 at the 8:52 mark of the second quarter. James ended with a game-high 121 reception yards.
It was another trade of scores as the Comets countered on the next possession. Taking possession at its own 45 following a short kickoff, an interference call on first down moved the ball across midfield to the Tigers’ 40. Five plays later, Donnie Savoie’s 9-yard pass to Sammy Martin made it 21-8 with 8:52 remaining before halftime.