October 16, 2019

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St. Charles pitches 36-0 Shutout Over E.D. White in Grand Opening of New Stadium

St. Charles Comets hosted the E.D. White Cardinals this Friday, with the Comets kicking off their first home game of the season as they opened the doors to their brand new, on-campus stadium.

St. Charles held a ceremony prior to kickoff to officially open the new stadium with guests of honor Archbishop Gregory Michael Aymond and New Orleans Saints owner Gayle Benson in attendance. Archbishop Aymond blessed the students, faculty, and ground of the new stadium, while Mrs. Benson was honored with the cutting of the ceremonial ribbon, announcing the grand opening of the Comet’s new stadium.

Mrs. Benson was also presented a gift from the St. Charles family; a Fleur De Lis forged from the remnants of the old Comet stadium, which contained sections of old Tulane Stadium, where the New Orleans Saints also called home from 1967-1974. 

1st Half

The E.D White offense took control on offense first, as the St. Charles defense opened up it’s first series in the Comet’s brand new stadium. On the second play of the drive, E.D. White QB Devin Desandro threw a screen behind the line of scrimmage for a completed pass but fumbled, resulting in a scoop and score by Comet LB Mandel Eugene, putting St. Charles up 8-0 early in the 1st.

On the ensuing drive for the Cardinal offense, E.D. White QB threw two consecutive incompletions, bringing up a 3rd and long. On the next play, Cardinal QB Desandro connected for a 17 yard gain, giving E.D. White a fresh set of downs after a somewhat slow start. However, the Comet defense would tighten up around midfield, resulting in a turnover on downs for the Cardinals, forcing a punt.

St. Charles took little time to get the offense going on their first possession of the night. On the very first play, Comet QB Reid Landeche handed off to junior RB Keenan Gauff, who broke through the Cardinal front seven as he sprinted for the endzone, giving the Comets its second score of the night, and their first offensive touchdown on an 85 yard rush.

E.D. White looked to dig itself out of a 15 point deficit, but failed to find any production on offense, surrendering a 3 and out while handing the ball back to a rolling St. Charles offense. 

The Comets looked content with keeping things on the ground, with RB Phillip Tran getting worked in, picking up 6 on his first carry of the night. Landeche tried testing the air, but failed to complete his first pass attempt of the night. Comet RB Gauff got his legs moving once again, darting for a gain of 15, putting his rushing stats at 2 carries for 100 yards with just under 5 minutes remaining in the 1st quarter. Gauff would carry again, barreling his way through the Cardinal front 7 for a first down as St. Charles moved its way into the redzone. Phillip Tran pushed the Comet offense closer to the goal line with consecutive carries, giving St. Charles a first and goal. The E.D. White defensive line did a great job of controlling the line of scrimmage once backed up against their own endzone, forcing 4th and 1 for the Comet’s, however, a holding penalty would push back St. Charles to a 3rd and goal with 15 yards to score. Comet QB Landeche would complete a screen to wideout Kendell Harris, who’d weave his way into the endzone, but for a second straight time, the Comets held the Cardinals, resulting in a 3rd and goal with 21 yards to score. St.Charles would fail to find the endzone, opting for a 3 point try instead, however, failed to split the uprights. A good defensive stand by the Cardinals as the St. Charles lead would remain at 15-0.

E.D. found themselves in a 3rd and 5 scenario, when Cardinals QB Desandro took a keeper, breaking multiple tackles for a huge gain as he crossed into SCC territory, giving his offense their best field position of the half. Desandro would test the option attack, pitching to RB Hunter Becnel, who was hit in the backfield for a 2 yard loss by junior defensive back Cade Pregeant, pitting the Cardinal offense in a 3rd and 12 scenario. Desandro dropped back on the 3rd and long, finding a wide open receiver, however, a sure first down catch was negated by a drop, bringing up a 4th and 12 for E.D. White. The Cardinals opted to test their luck on 4th and long, with Desandro dropping back in the pocket, taking a shot towards the endzone. Desandro’s pass was overthrown, resulting in a Comet interception by defensive back Kameron Campbell

The Comets answered strong following the huge turnover by their defense. The run game continued to roll, and on the third play, none other than Keenan Gauff broke away once again for a touchdown score, this time for 52 yards. At this point, the St. Charles rushing attack looked unstoppable, with Keenan Gauff leading the charge with his unreal first half performance. The Comets never looked back after the initial score on defensive, widening the gap as their lead increased to 22.

Cardinal QB Desandro finally found a receiver through the air, tossing a bullet to wide receiver Grant Gauthreaux for 15 yards and a first down. A chop block on the following play erased the 15 yard reception. Desandro kept working his legs, picking up 10 on the ground, making the 3rd down try more manageable, but still a daunting task for a struggling Cardinal offense. Through the first half, Desandro was extremely impressive as a runner, bailing out his offense with excellent gains through the ground. Desandro’s running could only do so much, as the Cardinals would fail to pick up the third and long, forcing their defense to contend the daunting Comet rushing attack once again. 

Following a short punt, a personal foul penalty against E.D. White gifted St. Charle’s offense a short field, taking over at their own 38. The Comets continued to test the run, as Tran picked up 5 on 1st down. Landeche would be sacked for a loss of 6 on the following play, the first negative play for the Comet offense. E.D. White’s defense hardened, forcing the Comets into a 4th and long conversion which they would fail to convert, resulting in the Cardinal offense taking over at their own 38.

Desandro and the Cardinal offense came out throwing following their defensive stand, but dropped passes plagued the Cardinals once again. On a 3rd and 10, E.D. White opted to run the ball, effectively ending the half as the Cardinals headed to the locker rooms to recuperate and prepare for the second half. 

2nd Half

St. Charles and Coach Frank Monica’s running game came out into the second half following the same script as the first. Gauff continued his dominating performance with back-to-back rushes for 5 and 15 yards, crossing over into Cardinal territory. Keenan Gauff kept churning out run after run for 10 yards or more, eventually bruising his way into the redzone. Gauff seemingly never got a break, as Gauff took a direct snap as he nearly picked up another 10 yard gain with the Comets threatening to score once again. Phillip Tran gave Gauff a breather, subbing in for the clear cut player of the game. However, Tran’s inclusion was simply a smoke and mirrors act, with QB Ladenche faking the hand off to Tran as Landenche scurried his way in for another Comet touchdown.

As impeccable as the rushing attack was for the Comets, the defense, especially on the line of scrimmage, was equally impressive. St. Charles executed a nearly perfect defensive possession, not allowing a single positive play on E.D. White’s first offensive possession of the 2nd half, forcing yet another punt for the Cardinals.

A huge return on the punt set the Comets up inside the redzone for their second possession on offense. Coach Monica continued his philosophy of relentless ground and pound with who other than Keenan Gauff taking it up the middle for his 3rd rushing touchdown on the night, increasing their lead to 36-0. All Comets as the 3rd quarter began to wind down. 

E.D. White’s next offensive drive nearly mimicked their previous possession. A quick 3-and-out for the Cardinals set up a punt, where it was shanked and netted only 12 yards, giving the Comets excellent field position with the 3rd quarter coming to an end. 

With the onset of the 4th, St. Charles moved forward with their reserve offense, who continued the relentless running game set in motion by Gauff and the 1st team. The Comets began to chew the clock as the game was well in hand for St. Charles, churning out hard earned yards on the ground, with punting being nothing but an afterthought for Coach Monica and staff. E.D. White eventually stopped the Comet conversions, but allowed St. Charles to burn 4 minutes off the clock.

The Cardinal offense would sustain a long, time consuming drive following the Comet turnover on downs, ultimately making it as close to the St. Charles 10 yard line. Unfortunately for the Cardinals, the Comet defense remained stout, denying an E.D. White score. The Comet offense continued to pound the football, draining the 4th quarter clock, with St. Charles pitching the shutout over the E.D White Cardinals, a near perfect way of breaking open the doors of the Comet’s brand new stadium. 

The tale of the tape for St. Charles was the overwhelming ground game, lead by Comet running back Keenan Gauff, who finished the night with 12 rushes for 212 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Louisiana Gridiron Football would like to thank Mr. Seth Bourgeois Sr. for all his help and support for tonight’s game.