Rams score early, often in win over ACHS Bulldogs

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 3, 2009



EDGARD — A week before its clash with top ranked St. John-Plaquemine, West St. John had to take care of business against Ascension Catholic if it wanted the season’s final game to decide an outright district champion.

The Rams weren’t caught looking ahead.

WSJ’s Xavier Pierre scored a career high four touchdowns on a rainy night in Edgard as the Rams rolled to a 38-12 victory over the Bulldogs.

All four of Pierre’s touchdowns came in the first half, as West St. John looked to pound the ball on a soggy field. WSJ rushed for 288 yards in all.

“It feels good. Now we have a chance to compete for a district title,” said Pierre. “We knew we’d have trouble passing tonight. We wanted to establish our running game to be at our best.”

The win sets up a winner takes all clash for District 8-1A between the eighth ranked Rams and St. John-Plaquemine, the top ranked team in 1A.

But the Rams (6-3, 4-0) needed a win over Ascension Catholic (4-5, 1-3) first.

The Bulldogs, however, landed the first blow. Myron Dominique returned the opening kickoff of the game 98-yards for a score to put ACHS ahead 6-0.

That success was fleeting. West St. John answered on each of its next four possessions. The Rams leaned on the running of powerful Xavier Pierre to cap each of the first two drives with scores – he’d cross the goalline on runs of one and four yards.

“Xavier’s a good back,” said West St. John coach Robert Valdez. “He’s a guy that allows us to run it north and south with great success. Our offensive line is getting healthier…it was good to establish our game early.”

WSJ’s third score came on a one-play drive on a short field after the Ram defense recovered a Bulldogs’ fumble. Dray Joseph threw a 26-yard pass to a wide open Corey Warmington to make it 18-6 with 4:39 left in the first quarter.

The lead grew to 26-6 after another Ascension Catholic fumble left WSJ to take over on the Bulldogs’ 42. Pierre was in for his third score six plays later, his two yard gash up the middle making it 24-6 with 54 seconds left in the opening quarter. Justin Smith added a run for two points to make it a 20-point lead.

The Ram defense recovered five fumbles in all, while the offense lost two.

Ascension Catholic shot back with a score, again on the back of Dominique, who this time returned a kickoff to the Ram 15. Charles Caballero was in for a 15-yard score on the first play of the second quarter, making it 26-12.

But on the ensuing kickoff, WSJ showed off one of its own standout specialists – returnman Ravane Owens made numerous tacklers miss on his way to the Ascension Catholic 9.

Pierre powered through a host of would be tacklers to score on the very next play, making it 32-12 with 10:57 left.

Joseph added one more touchdown late in the third quarter on a 40-yard jaunt down the sideline.

Ascension Catholic gained 200 yards of total offense but was never able to sustain a long drive.

“Our defense was able to create another line of scrimmage,” said Valdez.

Now, the Rams are off to face No. 1.

“I’m ready,” said Pierre. “The last time we played St. John was in my freshman year. We lost by two in the second round of the playoffs. I’ve looked forward to playing them again ever since.”