Rebels can’t solve Calvary, fall in semifinals

Published 4:12 am Saturday, November 29, 2014


SHREVEPORT — Riverside’s defense dominated during the second half of the Rebels’ season, but the Rebels simply didn’t have an answer for powerful Calvary Baptist Friday night.

Shun Brown scored two touchdowns and proved a threat in multiple ways — the wide receiver lined up at his natural position and at ‘Wildcat’ quarterback — while Shea Patterson and Orlando Bradford accounted for two touchdowns each as Calvary Baptist advanced to the Division III state championship game, besting semifinal foe Riverside 45-13.

Bradford finished with 191 yards rushing on 28 carries, forming the backbone of the Cavaliers attack.

“We had a really tough time against the run,” Riverside coach Bill Stubbs said. “And that came down to the fact that they have an excellent running back. He made us miss multiple times.

“Calvary … watching them on tape the last few weeks, I thought they were one of the best teams in any classification, and nothing tonight changed my mind. They took some things away offensively from us, made it tough to get the ball to our playmakers. I don’t think the score indicates the effort our guys played with. I’m very, very proud of our kids and the effort they gave tonight.”

Herb McGee caught seven passes for 81 yards, while Tyler Gauthier caught five passes for 95 yards and a touchdown to lead the Rebels. Freshman passer Jordan Loving completed 19 of 38 pass attempts for 258 yards and accounted for two touchdowns, but he was intercepted by Calvary three times.

The Cavaliers began the game with Brown in the Wildcat, a surprise move given starting quarterback and Arizona commitment Shea Patterson’s standing as one of the state’s most prolific offensive threats.

But the gameplan worked. Patterson did throw the night’s first touchdown, a 9-yarder to Brown, but Brown shook free from the Wildcat formation with 6:50 left in the first quarter, sprinting 71 yards for a touchdown to make it 14-0.

Calvary led 17-0 late in the first half when a Cavaliers interception set up a Bradford 1-yard touchdown with 25 seconds remaining in the second quarter.

Riverside (12-1) attempted to spur themselves to a comeback, Loving scoring with 5:48 left in the third quarter on a 1-yard quarterback sneak to make it 24-7.

But Bradford all but put the game away early in the fourth quarter when he got loose for a 51-yard touchdown run, making it 31-7.

“They’re big, fast … we knew what we were getting into,” Stubbs said. “They can hurt you from a number of different places.

Calvary (11-1) scored two more times before the night was through, while Loving added another scoring pass, and the Rebels suffered their first, last and only defeat of the 2014 season.

Stubbs said the Rebels fell two wins short of their ultimate goal, but also reflected on what was one of the most successful seasons in team history.

“A lot of Riverside people came out to watch us play up (in Shreveport), and that’s a testament to the people of our school and how they love football,” Stubbs said. “I’m really humbled and couldn’t be prouder to be a part of this program.

“We’re disappointed, yeah, but when the dust settles ultimately, we had a great year. This one will hurt for a long time, but we’ll get over it, rebound, reload and come back for another go-round.”