LCU stuns No. 15 Texas Wesleyan, 33-9

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PINEVILLE – The Louisiana Christian University Wildcats hosted the nationally ranked #15 Texas Wesleyan Rams for homecoming on Saturday for a Sooner Athletic Conference showdown. The men in orange and blue embraced the underdog role and shocked the nationally ranked Rams 33-9.

Louisiana Christian received the ball to get things started for homecoming, but Sal Palermo III was sacked on third down pinned the Wildcats at their own 17-yard line. The drive seemed to be over with the punt team on the field. The ball was snapped but not to the punter as expected. Instead, the snap went to the upback Andre Reed for a fake punt attempt.

The deception was executed perfectly, and the Rams were caught totally off guard as Reed passed the ball to a wide-open Daylon Charles who scampered 83-yards for a touchdown. The point-after-touchdown attempt by Levi Hilborn was successful and LCU took a 7-0 lead only a minute and a half into the game

The defenses exchanged blows for the rest of the first quarter and most of the second quarter with LCU holding onto the 7-0 lead.

The defensive deadlock was broken on a three-yard touchdown run by Palermo to extend the Wildcat lead to 14-0 after the PAT.

A blocked punt deep inside their own territory by Texas Wesleyan gave the Wildcat offense excellent field position to start the drive, but a touchdown was not in the tea leaves and LCU settled for a 21-yard field goal by Hilborn to extend their lead to 17-0 heading into halftime.

Texas Wesleyan received the kickoff to start the second half. The Rams drove down the field but could not convert on third down the Rams first points of the game would come on a 29-yard field goal by Armando Benitez.

Following the Texas Wesleyan field goal, the Wildcats received the ball and drove downfield in a methodical 14-play, 75-yard drive resulting in a three-yard touchdown run by Devin Briscoe. With the PAT, LCU extended their lead to a commanding 24-3 with 5:24 left in the third quarter.

With 5:59 left in the game, Palermo broke into open field and dashed 33-yards for his second rushing touchdown of the game in what seemed to be the final nail, putting LCU up 31-3 late in the game.

On the following possession, the Rams found their way into the endzone on a 14-yard touchdown pass from Carson Rodgers to Kieran Koltun. The PAT attempt by Benitez was blocked by Nate Sullivan, setting the score at 31-9 with 2:31 left in the game.

With 1:28 left in the game, Wildcats punter Mason Ingram boomed a 57-yard punt that was downed at the one-yard line for what was likely the Rams final offensive possession of the game.

The stifling Wildcat defense pushed Texas Wesleyan to third down and six from their own five-yard line. Rodgers dropped back into the endzone for a pass attempt but was overwhelmed by Micah Latin and Logan Brimmer.

The dynamic pass rushing duo shared credit for the sack safety to put the icing on top of the homecoming cake as Louisiana Christian stunned #15 Texas Wesleyan in a 33-9 thumping.

Palermo had a banner night rushing with 134 yards and two touchdowns on 16 carries. He also had seven completions on 19 attempts for 71 yards passing. Devin Briscoe added 88 yards and one touchdown rushing.

The Wildcat defense held the normally prolific Texas Wesleyan offense to only nine points and 138 yards of production. Logan Brimmer finished with nine total tackles, 2.5 sacks, and four tackles for loss, putting Brimmer’s season sack total at 9.5.

Micah Latin finished with seven tackles, 1.5 sacks, two tackles for loss, and a pass deflection. The sack and a half on the night puts Latin at 10.5 sacks on the year, the first player in the modern era of Wildcat football with double digit sacks in a season.

Next week, the Wildcats (4-4, 3-3 SAC) will head back on the road to Oklahoma to face the top team in the Sooner Athletic Conference, the Langston Lions (6-1, 5-1 SAC).

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