Rebels head into playoffs 10-0 after thrashing of Carver

Published 6:32 am Saturday, November 8, 2014


RESERVE — If any prospective Rebel playoff foe in 2014 was hoping Riverside would enter the postseason with its guard let down, they’d better think again.

The Rebels scored 35 first quarter points Friday night to put an exclamation point on an undefeated regular season, rolling past visiting Carver 63-0 to seal up the District 8-2A championship.

It is the second straight season Riverside (10-0, 7-0) has won a district title, the Rebels splitting the crown with Newman in 2013. This time, the league belongs to Riverside outright.

The loss dropped Carver to a final mark of 3-6.

RA coach Bill Stubbs challenged his team to treat this game as if it were an early playoff game, and he was pleased with the results, noting his players seemed “reengaged” after losing a bit of direction over the past two games, both lopsided victories.

“We had some hiccups and set out to eliminate those,” Stubbs said. “I think our guys decided that it was time to get this back to where it belongs and put it on their shoulders. When you play really well in all three phases like we did tonight, there’s plenty of things to feel good about that come from that.”

While the Rebels were able to rest their starters for much of the night after that explosive first quarter, some big numbers were established nonetheless. Jordan Loving threw three touchdown passes and completed 13 of 19 attempts for 135 yards. Herb McGee connected on his only pass attempt of the night, finding Jared Butler for a 28-yard touchdown. Darrion Cook caught three passes for 38 yards and two touchdowns.

Brandon Sanders handled just two carries, but those went for 30 yards and a score. LaBae Bridges and DeAndre Wilson added rushing scores of their own, and receiver Tyler Gauthier scored a touchdown for the fourth straight week.

Defensively, RA added another explosive play to a large collection, JuJuan Bell scoring on a 52-yard interception return. Tanner Triche scored on special teams on a blocked punt.

The shutout extended a dominant run of defensive play by the Rebels, who have allowed just 28 points over their last six games.

“Our defense has just gotten better each week for the most part, and right now they’ve got the bar set at a very high level,” Stubbs said.

The Rebels appear likely to finish at least one spot out of the bye week allotted to the top two seeds in the Division III postseason bracket, but Stubbs said it may well be for the best. Calvary Baptist and Catholic-New Iberia entered Friday night as the top two ranked teams in power points.

“It’s six in one hand, a half-dozen in the other,” he said. “We’re pretty healthy at this point in the season. The bye week is a thing that can go either way depending on where you are, but we’re playing well right now. I think it helps this team to keep that going and play next week.”