Louisiana’s Rushing Game Dominates Against Ohio in 49-14 Victory
The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns rushing attack was dominant against the Ohio Bobcats in their 49-14 midweek victory.
With the win, the Cajuns improved to 2-1 on the year. The team starts Sun Belt Conference play next week on the road against Georgia Southern.
The Cajuns offense looked very impressive on their first possession of the game against the Bobcats. Senior quarterback Levi Lewis connected with sophomore wide receiver Peter LeBlanc for a 46-yard passing play that got the Cajuns down to the Bobcats 17-yard-line.
Lewis finished off the 10-play, 91-yard drive with a touchdown pass to junior receiver John Stephens to give Louisiana an early 7-0 lead. Lewis completed all five of his passing attempts for 68 yards and the touchdown connection on their opening drive.
The Bobcats responded with an extended 8-play, 61-yard drive that got to Louisiana's 14-yard-line. However, after a false start nullified a 4th-and-1 conversion, a missed field goal ruined a promising drive, and the Cajuns offense took over.
On Louisiana's second drive, they got their rushing attack going. Freshman running back Emani Bailey was effective, running for 30 yards on only three carries. Montrell Johnson, another freshman back for the Cajuns finished off the drive with a six-yard touchdown run to put Louisiana in front 14-0. Louisiana had 59 total rushing yards on the 10-play, 80-yard scoring drive.
After that touchdown, Louisiana's offense stalled. The two teams exchanged multiple punts in the second quarter. Louisiana's offense had multiple opportunities to extend their lead to three possessions, but Ohio finally broke through with a 25-yard touchdown on their fifth drive to make it 14-7 with slightly over two minutes left before halftime.
In Louisiana's three drives following their second touchdown, they only managed to gain 18 yards on 11 plays. All of the possessions ended in punts.
Finally, Lewis and the Cajuns offense put together a nice drive before halftime, going 63 yards in eight plays to get down to the Bobcats 2-yard-line, and with three seconds left, they kept the offense on the field and Johnson got in for his second touchdown of the night to make it 21-7 going into the break.
Louisiana's rushing attack got going in the first half. The team had 23 rushing attempts for 124 yards, averaging about 5.4 yards per carry going into halftime.
Bailey and Johnson continued gashing the Ohio defense on the first drive of the second half, combining for 53 rushing yards, getting the ball down to the 1-yard-line. On fourth-and-goal, Johnson plunged in for his third touchdown run of the night, giving Louisiana their largest lead at 28-7.
Aided by multiple defensive penalties by the Cajuns, the Bobcats offense drove all the way down to the three-yard-line, but a fumble recovered by Louisiana defensive back Bralen Trahan ended the threat.
However, the Bobcats defense answered with their first turnover of the night on a Lewis interception. Ohio capitalized with their second touchdown pass to cut the score to 28-14.
A good drive by Louisiana late in the third quarter stalled, and a missed field goal kept them from stretching the lead back to three possessions. The Cajuns defense forced a three-and-out to prevent the Bobcats from capturing the momentum.
Louisiana started to pull away in the fourth quarter, capping off a nine-play, 68-yard drive with Johnson's fourth touchdown of the night on a fourth-and-goal play. Johnson's score brought the lead back to 21 points at 35-14.
Running back Chris Smith put the Bobcats away with a nine-yard touchdown run to give Louisiana a 42-14 lead. His first touchdown of the night finished off a nine-play, 79-yard scoring drive.
Backup quarterback Chandler Fields connected with Stephens for his second touchdown reception of the game with under a minute remaining to finish off a great night for Louisiana. They went on to win 49-14.
Louisiana's rushing attack was lethal against the Bobcats defense. As a team, the Cajuns had 311 rushing yards. Bailey finished with 89 yards on 11 carries and Johnson had 84 yards and four touchdowns on 13 rushes.
Up next, Louisiana starts Sun Belt Conference play on the road in Statesboro, Georgia against the Georgia Southern Eagles on Saturday, Sept. 25 at 5:00 p.m. The Eagles are 1-1 this season.