Rayville gets past DCS, 50-22
Rayville – Don’t adjust your newspaper and no it’s not deja’ vu! The Rayville Hornets and the Delhi Charter Gators met for the second time in a month and the result was mostly the same as the Hornets put up 50 points again enroute to the first round LHSAA Class 2A playoff win, 50-22.
This game finished much like the first game back in week seven with the Hornets hitting big plays early, the Gators hanging around for three quarters, but just not having enough firepower to swat down the Hornets when it counted.
After DCS rushed for over 200 yards in the first contest, Rayville committed to stopping the run and held the Gators to only 131 yards in this game while piling up an impressive 233 yards on the ground and 260 through the air on their own.
Quarterback James Powell, who finished 12 of 18 for 260 yards and three TDs, led the air attack hitting two big pass plays in the first quarter on third downs with a 54-yard pass to Jacoby Grace and a 41-yarder to Samuel Sledge.
Powell and Rashad Naylor added the conversion runs for the 16-0 lead after the first quarter. DCS Quarterback Mason Hale pulled the Gators within eight early in the second quarter on a 12-yard run but Sledge countered quickly on the next drive for the home team with a four-yard run and that left the score at 22-6 at halftime.
“Just like last game, I felt pretty good at halftime considering we were within two scores and we got the ball to start the second half,” Delhi Charter Head Coach Brett Raley said. “We just needed to get it done.”
Raley’s depleted troops answered the call as they marched 62 yards on 13 plays chewing up half of the quarter before Joshua Poland found the endzone on a four-yard plunge.
Fullback Michael Woods, who had 56-yards on 18 carries on the night, added the conversion run to cut the lead back down to eight at 22-14.
All looked well for the visitors to that point.
And just like the previous game, Rayville countered with 28 straight points to finish the game. Powell had an 11-yard run and a 13 –yard pass to Jalon Qualls in the third quarter.
Sledge added a 28-yard run in the fourth and Qualls added a 35-yarder late to account for the final Hornet points.
On the night, Qualls finished with 163 yards on 17 carries while Sledge chipped in 10 totes for 60 yards.
Sledge also had 64-yard receiving on three grabs while Grace was the Hornet’s leading receiver with three catches for 104 yards.
With time winding down and the Hornets second unit in the game, Hale connected with Poland on a 63-yard catch and run and Hale then added the conversion for the final margin.
Hale finished with 113 yards passing and 65-yards on 16 carries, while Poland had both receptions on the night to finish as the leading receiver with 113 yards.
The Gators finish their first season in Class 2A with a 4-7 mark and lost four games by less than a touchdown.
Earlier in the week, DCS had several seniors “take a knee” on the season but despite that distraction, the Gators fought valiantly again for three quarters before the Hornets pulled away.
Hale, Poland, Woods and the other seniors that stayed; Martez Allen, Bobby Benson, Devin Smith, Ethan Harrell, Lawson Nelson and Hunter Welch left all they had on the field.
“I hate it for these seniors that the season is over,” Raley added. “But I appreciate them fighting to the end in every game this year.”
Rayville improves to 7-4 on the season having won seven straight games and will travel to Kinder to take on the Yellowjackets in the second round.
Kinder comes into the game at 6-5 after a 40-12 win over the General Trass in the first round. I know all the staff in Richland Parish is hoping to get out for Thanksgiving a day early since kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. in Kinder.