Opportunistic Saints convert W-M miscues into points

Published 12:00 pm Friday, September 24, 2021

St. Louis made the most of opportunities created by turnovers, getting three scores from five takeaways in a 24-22 nondistrict win over Washington-Marion Thursday night at John J. Mims Stadium, snapping a two-game losing streak.

The Saints (2-2) took the lead for good on a 3-yard run by Marcus Duhon midway through the third quarter. The Saints extended the lead to 24-14 on a 21-yard run by Logan Trahan early in the fourth quarter. That drive was preceded by a leaping Duhon interception in the red zone to end a W-M drive at the Saints’ 12-yard line.

W-M (2-1) made it a onescore game on a 15-yard pass from Justin Thomas to Grayson Boulard with 5 minutes left.

The Charging Indians got the ball back, but Saints defensive back Spence Nixon picked off a pass with 1:40 left. Luke Pierson made a fourth-quarter interception for the Saints.

“We pride ourselves on defense, and hadn’t played well the past two weeks,” Saints head coach Brock Matherne said. “I thought we started to turn a leaf in the second half last week and it continued tonight. The name of the game is football. It is all about the ball — take it away on defense and take care of it on offense. We did a good job of taking it away tonight.”

Trahan finished with 192 yards to lead St. Louis.

W-M’s Derrick Paul ran for 102 yards and quarterback Justin Thomas threw for 198.

“The turnovers set us back with some adversity, but our guys fought through it,” W-M head coach Jules Sullen said. “It was a great game. St. Louis did a wonderful job. I just think our kids need to learn that if you fall behind, you have to take it one play at a time, not go for the home run.

“Offensively we played well. (Thomas) kept his head up on scrambles and got the ball downfield. Defensively we were pretty good, had some bends but didn’t break. I like the way our young kids fought through the adversity.”

Turnovers were the theme of the first half with each team forcing a pair and converting them into scores.

W-M lost fumbles on each of its first two possessions, giving St. Louis the ball at the 42 and

31. The Saints parlayed the first turnover into a touchdown with Trahan running around right end for a 31-yard touchdown.

W-M minimized the damage the second time around, holding the Saints to a 37-yard field goal by Spencer Briley.

W-M flipped the script on the second quarter, getting interceptions from Tyree Brown and Ezra Porter to set up touchdown drives. Ray Thomas scored on a 13-yard run to trim the margin to 10-7. Paul scored from 5 yards out to give W-M a 14-10 halftime lead.