Green Wave take big win under new coach
CENTRAL, La. — It was a night of significant firsts for the Cathedral Green Wave, not the least of which was the first W of the season.
For the first time ever, Cathedral did not take on a public school from either Mississippi or Louisiana to start a season. Their opponent for the first game of the 2010 high school football season was Central Private School of the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools.
And for the first time in over three decades, someone other than a Beesley was walking the sidelines as its head coach.
And what was supposed to have been a close, perhaps even down-to-the-wire battle between two teams with new head coaches ended up with the Green Wave taking a 28-6 win in Ron Rushing’s head coaching debut.
“Overall, I was pleased. Very pleased with the effort. I felt like we played hard tonight. It was a hot night,” Rushing said.
Cathedral junior quarterback Caleb Upton accounted for the Green Wave’s first three touchdowns. He threw an 80-yard touchdown pass to Daniel Huffines with 6:54 to go in the first quarter and Brent Gaude’ added the extra point for a 7-0 lead.
Upton scored on a 1-yard touchdown run with 7:00 to go until halftime that gave Cathedral a 14-0 lead on the extra point by Gaude’. Central Private took the ball down the field and scored on a 2-yard run by Ryan Bowman with 2:56 left in the first half to make it a 14-6 ball game.
After a scoreless third quarter, Upton threw a 31-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Fleming and Gaudé added the extra point for a 21-6 Cathedral lead.
Upton completed 14 of 23 passes for 224 yards with no interceptions. Huffines caught eight passes for 113 yards to go with nine carries for 32 yards. Semmes White had four catches for 73 yards.
Rushing complimented the work of the offensive line, which asserted itself as the game went on after a tough start.
“I thought Caleb threw the ball well. The offensive line did well as the game went on. The first two series we missed some blitzes. They sent five, six, seven guys nearly every down,” Rushing said. “Daniel had a big game offensively. Khalil Brice did a good job moving the chains.”
With the exception of the one series in which Central Private scored its touchdown, Rushing was very happy with the performance of the defense.
“There was one series where Central Private took it to us right before the half. We made some adjustments at halftime to stop their power running game. That forced them to start throwing the ball,” Rushing said.
Most of Central Private’s 131 rushing yards were during the first half. However, the Rebels finished with just 192 yards of total offense and turned the ball over six times.
Huffines was in on three of those with two interceptions and one fumble recovery go with five tackles and two assists. Brice had an interception to go with five tackles and three assists. Carl Hammitte had an interception to go with two tackles and three assists.
Tyler Jordan had one fumble recovery to go with three tackles and two assists. Despite playing with a mid ankle sprain, Josh Callaway had three tackles, two assists, one quarterback sack and one tackle for a loss.
Cathedral (1-0) plays at Loyd Star next Friday at 7:30 p.m.