Defense anchors Trojan win

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 18, 2000

BATON ROUGE, La. – Two down, two to go. The Ferriday Trojans edged the Christian Life Crusaders 19-18 Friday in a wet and wild Class 2A second-round playoff match. Ferriday’s defense, the anchor of the 11-1 team all season, again stepped up with timely big plays and consistent stinginess.

The Trojans seemed in danger of losing a precarious 7-6 lead in the third quarter after a late hit on Crusader quarterback Michael Clayton gave Christian Life a first-and-10 on the Ferriday 12-yard-line.

However, the Trojans held, forcing a 32-yard field goal attempt. The snap was fumbled, though, and Clayton tried a desperation pass into the endzone that was picked off by cornerback Fred Jones. Jones picked up a convoy of blockers and streaked 95 yards for the score.

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&uot;I saw it coming and I turned into Dieon,&uot; Jones said. &uot;That’s why they call me Prime Time.&uot;

On the Crusaders, ensuing possession, Ferriday linebacker Carlton Curvin stepped in front of a pass on the first play to give the Trojans the ball on the Christian Life 42.

Ferriday running back Corey Gordon, who finished the game with 109 yards and a touchdown on 33 carries, took the ball 37 yards on the first play to set up an 8-yard touchdown pass from Tyrrence Taylor to Arinn Long for a 19-6 third-quarter lead.

The Crusaders made the game interesting in the fourth quarter, as the team was sparked by a 53-yard touchdown run by Clayton.

Running back John Stewart Jr. brought the game to within one on a 30-yard scoring sprint with 2:10 left in the game. Ferriday had blocked two extra point kick attempts earlier in the game, and Christian Life attempted a two-point conversion for the win. Clayton faked a hand-off and tried to take it in himself, but was stopped a yard short.

&uot;Our defense played well,&uot; Ferriday coach James McFarland said. &uot;But I think our defense has played well all year long.&uot;

Ferriday returns home next week to face Farmerville.

&uot;As long as the seniors keep leading this team, we’re going to the Dome,&uot; Jones said.