Tech Flattens Cajuns 48-20
Kenneth Dixon’s 99-yard run In the first quarter got the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs jump-started and the two touchdown underdogs rolled up 533 yards in offense in throttling the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns 48-20 before a crowd of just over 25,000 at Cajun Field Saturday night.
Dixon, who set a freshman record with 27 rushing touchdowns two years ago, tallied 184 yards on just 12 carries, with two touchdowns, including a 32 yard run in addition to the 99 yard tally.
“This is a team loss and it starts with the head coach,” said a disappointed head coach Mark Hudspeth, who suffered his worst home loss as the Cajuns’ coach. I really thought we’d have played much better. I expect more out of this offensive football team than we saw tonight.”
The Cajuns had 415 yards in offense, but much of that came after the game was well out of reach as the Bulldogs’ defense came up with three turnovers and bottled up running back Elijah McGuire, who gained only 15 yards on seven carries and added seventeen yards on four receptions.
“We have not caused a turnover in the first two games and we’ve committed five ourselves,” Hudspeth said. “We’ve got to get better there.”
Dixon’s 99 yard run came after Daniel Cadona’s 34 yard punt was downed at the one yard line. Dixon burst through the line and by the time he got seven yards downfield he was in the clear.
Louisiana came back with an 80 yard, 10 play drive highlighted by a Terrance Broadway 33 yard run. Alonzo Harris finished the drive with a six yard run on the first play of the second quarter to tie the score. Broadway led the Cajuns in rushing with 82 yards, while Harris added 74.
After the teams traded punts, Tech embarked on a 61 yard drive with quarterback Cody Sokol completing four passes of more than ten yards, including a 16 yard strike to Hunter Lee to give the Bulldogs the lead for good. After a Cadona punt, the Bulldogs embarked on a 10 play 79 yard drive, getting a 28 yard field goal with just ten seconds left in the half.
Louisiana Tech got the second half kickoff and the Cajuns’ defense gave up another big play as defensive back Corey Trim fell down and Sokol found Sterling Griffin for a 78 yard strike to put Tech in front 24-7 and essentially put the game away.
Then the turnover bug hit the Cajuns has Harris fumbled at the LA Tech 44 on a hit by Tony Johnson, with Le’Vander Liggins getting the recovery. Tech was unable to turn that into points, but two series later, Broadway was picked off by Xavier Woods, who reversed field twice en route to a 46 yard touchdown to make the score 31-7 and end any chances of a Cajuns’ comeback.
Dixon’s second touchdown run of the night early in the fourth quarter made the score 38-7, and the Bulldogs forced a fumble by Larry Pettis on the next series, setting up a 42 yard field goal by Barnes.
Broadway threw a 20 yard pass to Efrem Reed to get the Cajuns on the board with 9:34 left, but Tech got another touchdown on Jared Craft’s two yard run. Backup quarterback Brooks Haack hit Gabe Fuselier with a touchdown pass on the final play of the game.
Solol finished the night 22-33 for 295 yards and the two touchdowns. Broadway was 19-31 for 150 yards.
“We’ll find out a lot about the character of this football team beginning tomorrow,” Hudspeth said. “I expect us to come out and be ready to get back to work and I expect us to play well next week.”
The Cajuns travel to Ole Miss for a 3pm game next Saturday, while Louisiana Tech (1-1) plays its third straight road game when they open Conference USA play at North Texas.