By Josh Walker
Central got off to a promising start Friday night but was unable to keep up the pace in a 35-14 loss to the St. Amant Gators. The Wildcats went 94 yards on their opening drive and scored a touchdown on an 8-yard Brett Courville run. Courville also ran in the two-point conversion to go up 8-0. The Gators countered with a touchdown on their first drive to cut the lead to one. Central’s next drive ended with a turnover on downs after a failed fake punt from their own 25-yard line. St. Amant kicked a 24-yard field goal to take a 10-8 lead. Gary Triplet scored the Wildcats only other touchdown in the second quarter on a 58-yard touchdown run. The St. Amant defense completely shut down the Wildcat offense in the second half, forcing four turnovers on downs, an interception, and a punt. Three of these drives started in Gator territory but the Wildcats were not able to capitalize on the good field position.
The Wildcats ended up with 303 yards (186 rushing, 117 passing). Triplet ended the night with 58 rushing yards and 75 receiving yards. Courville went 9-23 passing with 117 yards and an interception and also had 68 rushing yards. Zach Evans had 42 rushing yards and 16 receiving yards.
The Wildcat defense had trouble slowing down the St. Amant offense allowing 356 yards (122 passing, 234 rushing). The Gators scored on six out of their eleven drives. There were some positives though. The Wildcats forced two fumbles recovered by Logan Metcalfe and Dillon Brumfield. Paul Broussard led the Wildcats in tackles with 6 1/2. Logan Metcalfe and Zach Hetrick each had 6 tackles, and Antonio Ragusa had 5.
After the game, Coach Dotson described the as a “hard one to swallow. We have to put this one behind us and realize that non-district play is over.” He also said that the Wildcats need to take advantage of situations that they are put in. Finally, he said, “We can compete with anyone on our schedule.” The Wildcats certainly can but will need complete game efforts in order to do so.