Lewis shows full arsenal in 48-14 ESJ victory

Published 4:04 am Saturday, October 5, 2013


LAPLACE — East St. John has certainly found ways to score points.

After scoring just 14 points through its first three games of the year, ESJ has scored 77 in their last two. That includes a 48-14 victory at home over Central Lafourche in a District 7-5A contest.

After starting the season 0-3, ESJ  (2-3) in now 2-0 in district play, lending credence to the consistent word coming out of Wildcats camp — that those first three games, against Rummel, Scotlandville and John Curtis, did nothing but prepare this team for the 7-5A slate.

“Those first three games really slowed things down for us a lot,” said Lewis. “I know those were the hardest three games of my life, but they prepared us for this. We’re showing what we can do.”

The versatility of Xavier Lewis was on full display for East St. John, as the LSU commitment threw a touchdown pass and scored touchdowns rushing, receiving and on a punt return. He scored all three of his touchdowns in the first half.

Central Lafourche (3-2) entered the night with wins in three of its first four games, but an offense that averaged 26 points per game prior to Friday never got on track. The Wildcats led 42-0 at halftime.

“We set out to take away the run. We did that,” said ESJ coach Phillip Banko. “Darren Williams had another great game for us. Lorne McGuffy did too. He has the flu, but he gave us a quarter. That was all we asked.’

“A night like this is refreshing. We keep improving in all phases. I challenged them to start fast and finish fast, and that’s what we did.

Nigel Anderson rushed for 104 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries. Lewis completed 4-of-6 passes for 62 yards. His punt return was a 55 yarder.

The Wildcats scored a defensive touchdown as well when Derrick Johnson recovered a fumble and rumbled 87 yards for a score.

Gerald Munoz completed 3-of-4 pass attempts for 53 yards and a score, the first of the night, to Lewis. Kyle Patterson caught two passes for 60 yards and a touchdown. Amani Martin also made a big special teams play, returning a punt 89 yards for a touchdown.

Central Lafourche’s Da’Quan Gray rushed 20 times for 114 yards and a score. Thomas Wesley added 106 yards and a touchdown on eight attempts.

Both ESJ punt return scores were part of a 28-point second quarter barrage that put the game away.

“Our special teams are starting to come along,” said Banko. “Punt returns, kickoff returns, we’re making plays. Central Lafourche is a good football team, but we had a really strong performance tonight.”