Ascension Catholic rolls to road win over Slaughter

Michael Tortorich
Ascension Catholic quarterback Bryce Leonard launches a long pass. Photo by Michael Tortorich.

Ascension Catholic made short work of Slaughter Community Charter Friday night, jumping out to a 35-0 lead in the first quarter and never looking back.

The Bulldogs were able to work in reserve players through the remainder of the game, as they cruised to a 42-8 non-district win.

Ascension Catholic (3-0) recorded five touchdowns in the opening quarter. Bryce Leonard threw a 73-yard touchdown pass to Jai Williams on the second play from scrimmage. Williams added touchdown runs of 23 and 35 yards, and a 31-yard interception return for a score. Leonard also connected with Joel Landry on a beauty of a throw and catch for a 25-yard touchdown. Matthew Lafleur kicked all seven extra points.

Neither team would score again until the fourth quarter when Ascension Catholic's Owen Theriot plowed into the end zone on a 4-yard touchdown run. Slaughter was able to put points on the scoreboard when Trelon Perry scored on a 24-yard carry. Austin Eldridge ran in the two-point conversion.

Ascension Catholic Head Coach Benny Saia praised the way the starters were able to put the game away early.

"I felt like offensively they couldn't stop Jai," Saia said. "Defensively, I don't think they made it across midfield, but I'd have to see the film. I thought our first team controlled and dominated the game. I asked them to come out and give their best effort, regardless of who the opponent was. We wanted to come out and play Bulldog football. And I felt like they did that."

Leonard started at quarterback. The freshman signal caller finished 3-of-6 for 101 yards with two touchdowns. A 32-yard completion went to freshman running back Khai Prean.

As the second quarter started, reserve players took to the field for the Bulldogs. Backup running back Casey Mays had eight carries for 29 yards in the latter quarters. Theriot, Ethan Lewellen, Lex Melancon, and Layton Melancon all recorded carries later in the game.

"Those guys come to practice every day and get banged around," Saia said of the backup players. "For them to get in and get their 15 minutes of fame is great. They have a great attitude."

Defensively, Gage Breaux had four solo tackles, one assist and a forced fumble. Brayden Duhon tallied three solo stops and three assists. Dorian Barber recorded three solo tackles and three assists. J'Mond Tapp hurried the quarterback three times, and recorded two solo stops and three assists. Along with Williams, Eric Simon pulled down an interception.

Slaughter only completed one short pass during the game. The Knights relied on their rushing attack the whole night, compiling 160 yards on the ground.

Ascension Catholic will not play in the fourth week of the season, but Saia said it won't be a week off for the Bulldogs. Instead, he prefers to call it a week to work and prepare.

The Bulldogs will be back in action on Oct. 4, when they host Central Catholic at Floyd Boutte Memorial Stadium in Donaldsonville.