Leesville is off to a 2-0 start in conference play thanks to a solid 24-7 victory over the Broughton Capitals in week 8 of the 2015 football season.
For the second game in a row, the Pride had to battle the elements to emerge victorious over conference foes. The Pride (3-3) won last week at Heritage in a mud-bath, 30-0, and this week they thwarted the Caps (0-6) winning aspirations on a dreary evening once again.
The game, played on a Thursday, took the place of the JV team’s game against Heritage. The varsity game was moved up due to the threat of flooding and high winds on Friday. With Leesville’s Early decision and other teams decisions, almost every other team in the viewing area followed suit and also moved their games up to Thursday. Although the game was still very wet, it was certainly the right call, and Leesville Road head coach Brad Wilson thought his team handled the situation splendidly.
“We adapted to the elements very well I think,” said Wilson after the game. “The coaches are doing a great job and the players are doing a great job. We are getting better.”
The game started off slow, as neither team was able to do much in their first possession. Leesville’s kicker Jefferson Norwood was able to start the scoring with a 36 yard field goal in the first to make it 3-0. Quickly after, Broughton charged down the Pride’s end of the field for a touchdown of their own, making it 7-3. This score would prove to be the only one on the night for the Caps.
The score remained until the end of quarter one, but quarter two wouldn’t be the same. From the get-go, junior quarterback Cooper Eason Riddle came out to play, and he took the ball and ran for 12 yards to make it 10-6 early on after a long drive. With the Pride clearly gaining control of the game, the mass of poncho-covered students stayed celebrating all half long.
Then, not long after, the Pride capitalized on another opportunity. With two Broughton quarterbacks (Owen Wilkinson and Cliff Chavis) rotating in and out all evening, neither one could gain much momentum and the turnovers proved this. Following an interception on a long ball, Eason Riddle threw a long ball of his own and connected with senior Jordan Moore for 63 yards to make it 17-7 at half.
“He (Eason Riddle) gives you another running threat in the backfield,” said Wilson, head coach. “He can throw the ball too, but we are still working on it. He had a big throw to Jordan tonight and a couple of great throws in the elements. He’s really helped us out the last few weeks.”
The second half moved quicker after an hour and twenty minute first half that made many people question what season it actually is. The Capitals were held to zero points and after another short run by Eason Riddle, the Pride tacked on seven more to make it 24-7. This would stand to be the final, and Leesville’s young star would end the night having accounted for all three Pride touchdowns and 182 total yards of offense. Other notable performances included Jordan Moore on offense, coming up with a huge 63-yard reception for a touchdown, and K.J. Davis on defense, intercepting two passes on the evening.
Moore, one of the Pride’s go-to receivers, suffered an injury late in the game. The players took a knee and breathed a collective sigh of relief when he walked off on his own power. Other notable injuries include that of QB Clay Vick and WR Matt Hamilton.
All in all, the Pride were able to fire on all cylinders. They were able to hold the Capitals to one score, commit zero turnovers after multiple costly errors the week before, and relied on great QB play in Cooper Eason Riddle. At 2-0 in conference and 3-3 overall, the Pride are looking to get above .500 against Sanderson in week 9 of the season in their annual homecoming game.
For more info on all things Pride sports, visit the new Leesville athletics website, or follow The Mycenaean on Twitter at @LRHSnews.