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Destrehan scores late to defeat Blue Jays, 21-17

MATTHEW ALLEMAN / L’Observateur / September 9, 1998

DESTREHAN – The Destrehan Wildcats narrowly defeated Riverside Academy last week in the River Parishes Jamboree 16-12. This sub parperformance led many to believe the Wildcats’ matchup with the Jesuit Blue Jays Friday night would be a rough one.

But this was not the case, as the Destrehan Wildcats defense complemented its offense at Wildcat Stadium and the Wildcats came away with a 21-17 victory.

The first score of the night came on the sixth play of the Wildcat drive when Traun Smith scored on a 27-yard reception from senior Wendell Smith, making the score 7-0 following the point after. On the very nextdrive Destrehan was penalized on a fourth-and-inches, setting up a first and 10 touchdown by Jesuit. Running back Will Washington scored on a 46-yard run, and the point after was good to tie the score 7-7.

The Wildcats matched the Jesuit score with a 1-yard touchdown run by Traun Smith capping an 11-play, 81-yard drive.

Nearing the end of the first half the Jesuit Blue Jays answered back with a 25-yard touchdown pass from Perrin Rittiner to receiver Brett Gaudet.

The point after made the first half score tied 14-14.

Destrehan gained 135 yards of total offense in the first half, led by Traun Smith’s 68 yards rushing and 28 receiving yards for two touchdowns.

Jesuit’s rushing attack was led by Will Washington’s 11 carries for 70 yards and a touchdown.

In a second half dominated by defense, the Fighting Wildcats’ offense stalled to a dismal 3 yards total offense in the third quarter. The Jesuitdefense was led by senior linebacker Ryan O’Neal, who finished with 11 tackles.

Destrehan was down but not out as the fourth quarter began.

It was on the Jesuit Blue Jays’ first drive of the fourth quarter when the Destrehan defense got a break on a 19-yard holding penalty with five minutes left in the game. After receiving the punt Destrehan took onlythree plays to score as Traun Smith received for 68 yards for his third touchdown of the game. The point after put the Wildcats ahead 21-17. Jesuit’s last shot at a comeback started with three minutes left to play.

Destrehan’s Brent Davis came up big with a knocked down pass on second down and an interception on third and 10.

Finally the Wildcats knelt on the lead and moved to 1-0 in 1998.

Traun Smith finished the night with 14 rushes for 63 yards and a touchdown. He also had 3 receptions for 96 yards and two touchdowns.

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