Rummel pulls out miracle against Hahnville

Published 3:10 am Saturday, September 14, 2013

By Lori Lyons
Contributing Writer

With his offense was going nowhere and his defense was just about done. And nothing Rummel coach Jay Roth had tried against Hahnville had worked so far.
So with the Tigers leading 5-0 and time running out, Roth dipped into the old trick bag and came up with a winner. On second-and-10 at the Rummel 21, Raiders quarterback Chase Fourcade threw a hook to David Hensley, who lateraled it Keith Fulton, who then did what no other Raider had been able to do all night – score. Fulton’s 79-yard touchdown on a classic hook-and-lateral and Enrique Carrasquero’s PAT with 18 seconds remaining proved to be the game-winner as Rummel escaped Hahnville with a 7-5 win in the first regular-season meeting ever between the two.
“It was all we had left,” Roth said. “It was the only play I had left on my card that had any chance of working. Not a one of them worked all night. I don’t know what to tell you. After we scored I was excited, then I felt bad for the other team. We snatched victory from the jaws of defeat.”
In fact, the play had already failed once, on the previous play on first down. But Hensley missed the catch the first time.
“I’m thinking, ‘Don’t you think they’re going to catch on Coach?” Hensley said. “In my head I’m going back to the huddle like, we just ran that on first down. Maybe they figured it out. I was surprised it worked.”
Until that point, Hahnville had done just about everything it needed to do to win. The Tigers outrushed, outpassed and outplayed Rummel for 47 minutes. Led by running back Lynn Simmons’ 70 yards, Hahnville rushed for 111 yards while the Raiders finished with 57. Not including the touchdown, Rummel’s quarterback tandem of Fourcade and Jordan Nami had gone 1-for-13 for 7 yards with one interception. Carrasquero punted eight times on the night.
But all the Tigers had to show for it was a 50-yard field goal by Craig Ford in the second quarter. Then the special teams a blocked punt for a safety in the fourth quarter. An interception and a fumble recovery – not to mention numerous stops by the defense – all went for naught.
Meanwhile, Hahnville senior quarterback Dylan Keller was a warrior, taking hit after hit as he rushed for 32 yards on 21 carries – his longest a 13-yard gain. He completed his first five passes for 45 yards, then went 0-for-6 with two interceptions. And it may have been his final performance. With 5:15 remaining, Keller left the game with a possible broken left collar bone.
“That’s probably our biggest loss,” Hahnville coach Lou Valdin said. “I’m proud of my kids. We found out we can play with anyone in the state. And we played defense every play but one. You can’t let a team like Rummel hang around.”
Hahnville showed early that it wasn’t going to go away quietly. The Tigers’ first possession was a 12-play, 78 yard drive that got to the Rummel 28-yard line with Keller going 5-for-5 before being intercepted by Rummel’s Dwayne Eugene.
Then Hahnville’s defense showed what it could do, holding the Raiders to 7 yards on five plays before forcing a punt.
Hahnville got a break on its second possession. After Ford punted from his own 35-yard line, the Raiders were penalized 15 yards for roughing the kicker. That gave the Tigers a first down at the 50 with 1:46 remaining in the first quarter. Keller wasn’t able to get the Tigers too far into Rummel territory, but it wasn’t necessary. With 11:50 to play in the second half, Ford lined up and nailed a 50-yard field goal.
The score remained 3-0 until the 8:00 mark when Carrasquero dropped back to punt from deep in his own end zone. Hahnville’s Ricky Davis blazed a path toward him and got a hand on the ball, which rolled out of the back of the end zone for the safety.
It was four plays into Hahnville’s ensuing possession when Keller ran around the left end and was hit near the Hahnville sideline. He went to the sideline favoring his left shoulder, threw his helmet to the ground and went to the bench. Hahnville even managed to keep possession when Ricky Davis recovered a muffed punt at the Rummel 31. But the Tigers could not capitalize. Backup quarterback Logan Martindale, Simmons and Todge Scott got the Tigers to the Raiders 35.
The Tigers thought they were done when Timothy Roberts intercepted Nami at the Raiders 40 with 2:47 remaining in the game. But Rummel’s defense stiffened and Hahnville could not move the ball. Ford punted and the Raiders took over at their own 21 with 34 seconds remaining.
And that was just enough time for Rummel.
“Any time you say, ‘Watch the hook and ladder’ and they run it, it works,” Valdin said. “That’s part of football. Any time you call a play and they run it, it works.”