Nov. 9, 2013
NATCHITOCHES, LA - For just the second time this year, Lamar University was unable to hold on to a halftime lead as Northwestern State outscored the Cardinals 20-7 in the second half to claim a 37-28 Southland Conference win Saturday at Turpin Stadium.
"I liked where we were at halftime, but we were outplayed in the second half in all three phases," said Lamar head coach Ray Woodard. "We didn't do enough on offense, defense or kicking game in the second half to win the game. I'm very disappointed. We had an opportunity to win a game and didn't do it.
"I liked the way we came back in the first half and showed some resiliency. In the third quarter, offensively, we didn't do enough to hardly get a first down and defensively we gave up big plays. We have to do a better job all the way around."
Lamar, who snapped a three-game losing streak with last week's 56-34 win over Nicholls, lost for the second straight year in Natchitoches. The Cardinals dropped to 4-6 overall and 1-4 in SLC play. Lamar returns home to host Stephen F. Austin Saturday for a 6 p.m. kickoff at Provost-Umphrey Stadium.
Quarterback Caleb Berry continues to add to his record-setting season. He completed 25-of-41 passes for 258 yards. His 25 completions gave him 231 for the season, which ranks second all-time to Larry Haynes' 233 (1979). He now has 323 career completions, which moves him into third place in school history. He also moved into sixth place on the school's career total offense list with 3,600 total yards.
Reggie Beggleton led the Cardinals with nine receptions for 90 yards. Mark Roberts added six grabs for 72 yards. Kade Harrington was Lamar's leading rusher with 72 yards on 17 carries and added a touchdown.
Trailing 21-17, NSU scored the only points of the third quarter. Daniel Taylor scored on a 26-yard reception from Zach Adkins with 1:47 left in the third quarter. Chris Moore's extra-point was no good to give the Demons a 23-21 lead.
NSU (5-5, 2-3) scored to open the fourth quarter as Adkins hit Louis Hollier on a 4-yard scoring strike to put the Demons up 30-21 with 14:50 remaining.
The Cardinals answered with a scoring drive of their own. Peyton Ploch scored on a 1-yard run to cap a 15-play, 75-yard drive to pull with two points at 30-28 with 9:31 left in the game.
After the defense forced a NSU punt, the Cardinals offense took over at their own 14 with 7:05 remaining. After moving the ball to the NSU 48, the drive bogged down and Berry was sacked for a 3-yard loss on third-and-10 to force a Lamar punt.
Trying to run out the clock, De'Mard Llorens broke through the Cardinals defense for a 55-yard touchdown run to extend the Demons lead to 37-28 with 1:16 left in the game.
NSU put up 461 yards of total offense, gaining 211 on the ground and 250 passing. Lamar was held to just five net yards of rushing and 258 yards passing for 263 yards of total offense.
Adkins completed 26-of-35 passes for 250 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Llorens led the team with 75 yards rushing on five attempts and Atzenweiler added 65 yards on 14 carries and one TD. Hollier caught six passes for 60 yards.
Lamar started the scoring on Tyrus McGlothen's 65-yard interception return for a touchdown at 8:36 remaining in the first quarter. That was McGlothen's second straight game with an interception return for a touchdown after taking one to the house from 56-yards out in last week's win over Nicholls.
NSU answered with an 8-yard touchdown run by Garrett Atzenweiler that capped an 11-play, 75-yard drive to tie the score at 7-7.
On the Cardinals ensuing possession, Berry's pass attempt was ruled behind the line of scrimmage and therefore a fumble that NSU's Keland Johnson recovered at the LU 35. The Demons wasted little time in scoring as Robert Walker scored on an 18-yard run to give the Demons a 14-7 lead with 2:09 left in the first quarter.
The Cardinals tied the game at 14-14 on Kevin Johnson's 52-yard punt return for a touchdown. It was Johnson's second punt return for a touchdown this season. He returned a punt 48 yards for a score at Grambling on Sept. 28. The touchdown also moved him into 10th place on the school's all-time career scoring list with 102 points.
Following Berry's second fumble of the first half, the Demons drove all the way to the LU 1, but the defense held NSU out of the end zone. Chris Moore hit a 19-yard field goal to give the Demons a 17-14 lead with 7:41 remaining in the second quarter.
Lamar closed out the scoring in the first half on Harrington's 7-yard touchdown run with 6:44 left in the half. The drive was set up by Johnson's 47-yard kickoff return that set up the Cardinals at the NSU 46. Lamar took a 21-17 lead into the locker room at halftime.