Notre Dame Lumberjacks headed to Dome

Published 12:00 am Monday, December 6, 2004


Managing Editor

LUTCHER – Despite a vigorous defensive effort, it was not enough to keep the Notre Dame Lumberjacks from edging past the Lutcher Bulldogs Friday. Lutcher lost 23-13.

The game got off to a quick start when Juan Johnson accepted the opening kickoff at the Bulldog 31, fullback Wayne Albert shot past the Notre Dame defense 53 yards to the two-yard line and quarterback Dustin Mitchell dropped in for the opening score with 11:08 on the clock. Terrence Jeffrey nailed the PAT for the 7-0 lead.

The Lumberjacks accepted the returning kickoff and drove upfield to the Lutcher 11 before a sack dropped quarterback Andre Robichaux to the 20. From there, Mark Alleman nailed a field goal with 7:36 in the first quarter for the 7-3 score.

After a Lutcher punt, Notre Dame again crept upfield, harried by the Bulldog defense, for the rest of the first quarter.

Finally, on the opening play of the second quarter, Robichaux connected with Joe Voitier for a touchdown. The PAT put the score at 10-7.

Lutcher tried again to penetrate the Lumberjack defense but gave up the ball on downs with 10:19 on the clock. It took 13 plays, but running back Rick Zaunbrecher shoved in from one yard to get the next TD with 4:18 left in the second quarter. The PAT was good, and Notre Dame had a 17-7 lead.

Lutcher powered their way back up the field and approached as close as the Lumberjack 11-yard line before time ran out and the first half ended.

The Bulldogs tried an onside kickoff in the opening of the second half, but lineman Bo Venable posted the ball near midfield.

Two plays later, Scotty Francis swept wide to the left and outran the Bulldog defense for the touchdown with 10:56 in the third quarter. The PAT fell short, and Notre Dame sat on their 23-7 lead.

After an exchange of punts, Lutcher started their next tried with 5:27 left in the third quarter with the ball at their own 29-yard line. Wayne Albert moved the ball one yard. Khymest Williams moved the ball one yard.

Then Dustin Williams connected with Juan Johnson for the 69-yard pass play for the second Lutcher touchdown, with 3:37 left in the third quarter. A two-point conversion run fell short, and the Bulldogs trailed 23-13.

The two teams struggled for the remainder of the third quarter and well into the fourth quarter. With 8:43 left in the game, Notre Dame took over on downs at their own 48-yard line.

This drive took the Lumberjacks all the way to the Lutcher 10-yard line, where a fumble landed under the belly of cornerback Jarron Jackson at the seven-yard line with 4:09 left in the game.

However, the burst of hope faded four plays and one minute later when a pass was intercepted by Notre Dame’s David Hensgens at the Lutcher 43-yard line.

The Lumberjacks failed to capitalize on this and ended with a net two yards on the drive.

Notre Dame’s punt set the Bulldogs back on their heels at their own 3-yard line.

Lutcher’s last drive was made up of three incomplete passes and a fumble, recovered by Lumberjack Gregory Harmon at the Bulldog 5-yard line with one minute remaining.

Two kneels, and it was all over but the hugs.