BELTON, Texas – The Louisiana College football team got a 200-yard rushing performance from freshman running back Devin Briscoe, but it wasn’t enough to upset Mary Hardin-Baylor as the Wildcats dropped the regular season finale to the Crusaders 65-20 Saturday afternoon at Crusader Field.
The game started out quite well for the Wildcats, who took in the opening kickoff and methodically marched down the field deep into Crusader territory. Facing a third and eight play at the UMHB 11-yard line, Sal Palermo III was hit and fumbled, but the ball bounced perfectly to Briscoe who had only open field ahead of him for a 13-yard touchdown and a 7-0 LC lead.
Now trailing 13-7 towards the end of the first quarter, the Wildcat defense held on fourth down for a turnover on downs, giving the offense the ball at the LC 33. The ensuing drive would be almost completely all Devin Briscoe on the ground as he accounted for 61 yards of a 67-yard drive, including the final 19 on a scamper to the end zone that tied the score at 13-13.
But the game turned over the next two Wildcat possessions as UMHB returned an interception for a touchdown, and then intercepted a pass on LC’s next drive and returned it to the Wildcat ten-yard line, which eventually turned into another Crusader touchdown. Trailing 34-13 with 1:30 remaining before half, the Wildcats looked to grab momentum heading into the break and believed they had as Palermo found Micah Dunn for a 36-yard touchdown pass with just 49 seconds left before halftime to make the score 34-20. However, the Crusaders added a field goal on the final play before halftime to make the score 37-20 at the break. The second half was all UMHB as the Crusaders held LC scoreless in the final two quarters of the regular season.
Devin Briscoe had a day against the Crusaders as he gained 6.1 yards per carry on 33 rushing attempts to finish the day with 202 rush yards and 2 touchdowns. Sal Palermo III went six-of-13 passing for 80 yards, including the 36-yard touchdown pass to Micah Dunn just before halftime. He also threw an interception and was sacked four times. Canaan Leon had three catches to lead the team while Dunn’s 36-yard touchdown made him the team’s leading receiver in yards for the game.
Defensively, Julius Johnson led the team with 12 total tackles, including one for a loss of a yard. Tyren Young collected LC’s lone turnover as he intercepted the Crusaders to kill a UMHB drive in the end zone and returned it for ten yards.
The Wildcats (2-2, 2-2 ASC) now had into the ASC Playoff week as the four-seed from the East Division where they’ll host the four-seed from the ASC West, McMurry. Kickoff of Saturday’s game against the War Hawks (1-3, 1-3 ASC) is set for 1:00 P.M. at Wildcat Field.