Holy Cross narrowly escapes Chalmette in intense rivalry game
The Holy Cross-Chalmette rivalry is a local classic with games dating back to 1961. Holy Cross has owned the series since 2017. To make matters even more exciting, both teams entered Friday’s game undefeated on the season.
Offensive consistency went up and down for both teams, but when Holy Cross found themselves up by one possession late in the fourth with the ball in Chalmette’s hands, they needed their defense to step up. And step up it did, sealing the win with an endzone interception.
The game itself up to that point was a rollercoaster of emotions.
The first score of the game came early in second quarter. Kayden Andoh marched the ball down the field for Holy Cross and finished the drive with a 1-yard touchdown run to make it 7-0.
Following a squib kickoff recovery by Nicholas DiGerolamo deep in Owls territory, a two-yard rush from Ke’Rynn Smith put Holy Cross ahead, 14-0.
Chalmette finally answered though when Ethan Couvillon threw a 25-yard dime to Rayone Russel for a touchdown but the visiting Tigers led 14-7 at the half.
Cole Canatella fired a 15-yard touchdown pass to Derrick Johnson, putting Holy Cross back up by 14 in the third quarter.
Right before the end of the period, Couvillon connected with Jaden Williams in the endzone on a five-yard pass to bring Chalmette back within seven.
Quickly stopping the Tigers and getting the ball back, the Owls scored another touchdown via a 3-yard rush from Couvillon in the middle of the fourth quarter. Chalmette attempted to fake the extra point but was stopped in their tracks, leaving the score 21-20 in favor of Holy Cross.
The final score of the game came from an impressive 42-yard run by Smith to put the Tigers up 28-20.
The rest of the game was decided by defense and clock management. With just around two minutes left to play and the Owls in the Tigers’ red zone, Holy Cross came up big and intercepted the ball in the end zone to seal the game.
Holy Cross’s offense was dominated by the run game. Smith ran for 84 yards and scored two touchdowns, while Andoh ran for 80 yards and one score.
Canatella amassed 72 all-purpose yards on the night with his one touchdown pass.
The Tigers defense had three interceptions, one by Tommy Ashby, one by Devin Woodson, and one more, and one forced fumble. DiGerolamo also recovered one dropped punt by Chalmette.
Head Coach Scott Wattigny was proud of the way his team played but had many notes on how to improve.
For Chalmette, Couvillon had 121 all-purpose yards accounted for three touchdowns including a three-yard run. The other two scores were passes to Russell, who had 31 receiving yards, and to Williams, who had 46 receiving yards.
Axton Lopez also ran for 105 yards for the Owls.
The Chalmette defense recovered one fumble, and Elijah Dubose sacked Canatella for a loss of seven yards.
Holy Cross (3-0) will take on Archbishop Rummel next Friday in their first district game. Chalmette (2-1) will also play Friday against Patterson.
– 65 passing yards
– 191 rushing yards
– 65 receiving yards
– 3 interceptions
– 98 passing yards
– 162 rushing yards
– 98 receiving yards
– 1 sack
Quarter — 1st 2nd 3rd 4th — Total
Holy Cross 0 14 7 7 — 28
Chalmette 0 7 7 6 — 20
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Wyatt Audler is a senior in high school at Holy Cross of New Orleans who runs cross country and track and field. He has had a love for sports all his life and hopes to get early exposure into the field of sports writing with the help Crescent City Sports. Wyatt looks to study sports journalism in college and become…