Vidalia Vikings defeated by strong Jena rushing attack
Published 12:50 am Saturday, October 11, 2014
The Vidalia Vikings were looking to turn over a new leaf Friday night as they opened district play against Jena, but the Vikings were unable to get past a strong Giants rushing attack, falling 42-8.
“Our guys played their butts off tonight,” Vidalia head coach Jeff Hancock said. “We’re learning. We’re a young team. I wish it happened overnight, but it doesn’t. We’re getting there. Our guys are busting their butt, and like I’ve said all along, effort has never been a question.”
The Vikings (0-6) hung around with the Giants (4-3) early, but were unable to get much going offensively.
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The only score of the first quarter came on a blocked punt by Jena that was scooped up by Jackson Clark and returned 40 yards for a touchdown. Fortunately for Vidalia, the Giants offense wasn’t warmed up just yet.
“We were very flat,” Jena head coach Jay Roark said. “That is two weeks in a row we have come out and started with no emotion.”
But the Giants found their stride in the second quarter, mainly through running backs Charlie Smith and Jemarcus Hammock, who combined for more than 200 yards on the ground.
After Smith and Hammock singlehandedly drove the Giants down the field, quarterback Lamar Farris found Jaray Jenkins from 16 yards out to push the lead to 14-0 in the second quarter.
Smith would be the next to find the end zone, this time from five yards out to give Jena a 21-0 lead heading into halftime.
On the first drive of the second half, Smith scored his second touchdown of the night, this time from two yards out to give the Giants a commanding 28-0 lead.
Hammock found the end zone early in the fourth quarter on a 34-yard run for his lone score.
“I thought they did well, and they did a lot of it on their own tonight,” said Roark of his running backs.
But even at 35-0, Vidalia wasn’t giving up.
On the ensuing possession, Vidalia put it all on the table, attempting a flea-flicker. Despite a bobble by quarterback Landon Seyfarth, he was able to toss a 49-yard bomb to Jimmy Anderson, who caught the ball off a tip and took it into the end zone to put the Vikings on the board.
Seyfarth finished the night 7-of-13 for 126 yards.
Farris would add a late touchdown run for the Giants from 16 yards out to cap the scoring at 42-8.
Leading the Vikings offensively was Antione Taylor, who carried the load in the backfield. Taylor finished the night with 16 carries for 80 yards.
“He is finally figuring out how to run inside and outside zone,” Hancock said. “He had a lot of great plays during the course of the game.”
Another Viking who posted solid numbers was Errick Genous, who led the team in receiving with three catches for 37 yards.
Next up for the Vikings is a trip to Marksville.