St. Charles snaps East Jeff streak convincingly, 49-14

Published 5:14 am Saturday, September 13, 2014


LAPLACE — The defending Class 4A champion East Jefferson Warriors won’t soon forget their trip to LaPlace Friday night. St. Charles Catholic made sure of that.

Erron Lewis scored four touchdowns, Justin Loupe added two more and Eric Lewis capped things off with a pick-six interception return in the Comets’ 49-14 rout of East Jefferson, ending the Warriors’ state-high winning streak at 16.

“I think it puts us back on the map,” Eric Lewis said. “We had some really good things going on tonight. We have to stay humble and keep working hard, but this was a big win for us.”

Despite the majority of East Jefferson’s stout 2013 defense returning, St. Charles found a lot of room to work with on the ground. The Comets rushed for 250 yards in the game, led by Erron Lewis’ 17-carry, 149-yard performance. Loupe added 62 yards on 12 carries.

“We knew they had the best secondary, overall, of anyone we’d see,” St. Charles coach Frank Monica said. “I was concerned today about the rain and the field conditions … I knew we had to run the ball at them, to negate their speed somewhat. Our guys took control of the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball.

“This win makes a nice statement for our guys. I told our guys before the game that East Jefferson plays with a swagger and we hadn’t gotten to that point. Tonight, we got closer to that. There’s still a lot we need to work on.”

On the defensive side, St. Charles’ defense corralled the East Jefferson triple-option, never allowing the Warriors to get into any kind of flow. SCC allowed two touchdowns, both generated off of big plays, and otherwise allowed no drives into Comet territory.

“I thought our defensive line and offensive lines were the MVP tonight,” Eric Lewis said. “Coach kept telling us, ‘Stop the dive, stop the dive.’ Once we did that, he said we had to do our jobs in the secondary.”

East Jefferson (1-1) turned the ball over four times on the night. The Warriors generated just one first down in the first three quarters of play and three overall.

The Comets (2-0) jumped out ahead after just 1:37 of play after recovering a fumble on EJHS’ second play from scrimmage at the Warrior 26. Erron Lewis broke free on SCC’s second play, rushing in from 23 yards out to make it 7-0.

SCC forced a punt and went back to work in good field position. Austin Weber connected with Dane Authement for 11 yards to cross into EJHS territory. An offsides on a third-and-one netted SCC a first down, then Lewis got loose for gains of 16 and 10 yards to the EJHS 14. He’d cap the drive with a 2-yard score at the 4:48 mark of the first quarter.

The lead ballooned to 21-0 after another East Jefferson fumble, this one recovered at the Warrior 18. It took two plays for Lewis to roll into the endzone again, this time from 14-yards out.

“We know they still have the crown,” Erron Lewis said. “Getting the kind of lead we did was a surprise. Our offensive line did a great job getting a man on a man and getting the running backs to the second level. Once we got there, we had to break a few tackles, and we did that as a group.”

East Jefferson had a chance to turn the momentum back to their side,  finally answering via a third-and-15 bomb from Tracey Bright to Quincy Cummings for a 79-yard touchdown. That play, followed by a Lewis fumble, gave the Warriors a crack at making it a one-score game. But SCC forced another punt; this time, it was Loupe’s time to shine, chewing up 59 total yards, including a 21-yard reception and an 11-yard touchdown run to make it 28-7. Loupe added his second score of the day on SCC’s next drive, via a 3-yard plunge.

“We just had momentum on our side,” Erron Lewis said.

EJHS’ Kalib Brown broke free on a counter just before the end of the half, gaining 75 yards down to the 5 yard line. Bright scored on a 1-yard keeper to make it 35-14 at halftime.

East Jefferson wouldn’t score again, though. Lewis added his fourth score of the night with 11:43 remaining in the game, then brother Eric Lewis scored a touchdown of his own on defense,  intercepting a pass off a deflection and bringing it back for a long return score.

“We were outcoached — and that begins with me,” first-year East Jefferson coach Marc Martin said. “We were outplayed. I told our team this was a tough place to play and a tough football team. Maybe they’ll believe me going forward, because every team we play this year is better than they were last season. And St. Charles certainly is.”