Pioneers blowout Church Point
By Lance Reed
LSN STAFF WRITER
CROWLEY – It was Notre Dame’s 11th win of the season and it was also the their most dominating performance of the year.
The Pioneers turned out a 54-7 victory over the Church Point Bears in the second round of the Class 2A playoffs. There was little doubt in this contest. The Pios jumped out in front early and took the wind out of the sails of the Bears.
The Bears got the ball to begin the contest. Two plays into the game, a fumble gave the ball to the Pios on the CPHS 18-yard line. It didn’t take long for senior tailback Jordan Bertrand to get his thing on. He punched the rock in from one-yard away. Steven Benoit added the extra point. With a little over nine minutes left in the first period the Pios were up 7-0.
The Bears were forced to punt the ball back after a three-and-out performance that ended with a sack combination from Hunter Stover and Mikey Dyzart. Junior signal caller Ryan Leonards and company got to work. Leonards hit Nick Zaunbrecher to move the ball into the red zone. Bertrand capped the drive with a 16-yard touchdown run. Benoit’s kick made it 14-0 with five minutes to go in the period.
On the first play of their next possession, the Bears fumbled the ball into the hands of D.J. Welter. With the ball on the CPHS 16-yard line, Leonards went back to work. He found junior receiver Morgan Allen on a touchdown strike. Benoit’s kick ripped the uprights, making it 21-0.
For the second time in the period, the NDHS defense pushed Church Point off of the field again after three plays. The Pios were ready to pounce back on the Bears. A screen pass to Stu Cook moved the ball into the red zone. Jack Thomas Hundley sprinted for 19 yards and six points to cap the short drive. Benoit’s kick gave the boys of NDHS a 28-0 lead going into the second stanza.
The turnovers continued to help the Pios in the second period. Senior safety Bryant Gilbert picked off a Blake Boudreaux pass to give the ball back to the NDHS offense. The fifth drive of the night for Notre Dame was all Robert Sarver. The senior fullback hauled in a pass and then took a handoff for a touchdown. His eight-yard run made it 34-0 with a little less than 10 minutes left to play.
Right before halftime, senior defensive tackle Adam Meche recovered a fumble on the CPHS seven-yard line. Moments later Cook punched the ball in from four yards out. William Primeaux nailed the extra point, making it a 41-0 ball game.
The Pios continued to dominate the game in the second half. After not allowing a first down in the first half, the Pios allowed just two overall and held the Bears to two yards overall. Sacks from Stover, Dysart and Molbert kept things under wrap for the Pios. The Pios went on to score two more times. Cook scored on a 35-yard run and Luke Besse crossed the goal line in the final period.
“The first reason we were able to dominate the game is because it’s the playoffs,” said Notre Dame skipper Lewis Cook. “The kids understood that Church Point has been playing well. That seemed to get their attention. Plus, we were playing the same team again really soon. We approach every game in the same way. We know that each week it really depends on who shows up and plays.”
The NDHS offensive line played a great game. They helped the NDHS running backs to 255 yards on the ground. Sarver led the Pios with 63 yards on nine carries. Cook finished with 55 yards on four carries and Bertrand was good for 34 yards. Leonards was 5 of 9 for 90 yards in the air.