Lafayette Jeff’s football team makes plenty of big plays.
However, it’s the little things once the Bronchos move deep into their opponent’s territory that continue to plague a team that fell to 1-4 Friday night when Hamilton Southeastern posted a 42-22 victory in Scheumann Stadium.
Jeff got 94- and 57-yard kickoff returns from senior Darian Green and a 50-yard interception return from Woody Archibald to set up two touchdowns and a field goal, respectively, but the Bronchos missed chances to make this one very entertaining when they failed on fourth-down conversion attempts from the HSE 19-yard line in the third quarter and from the Royals’ 11 in the final period.
Green, who carried 35 times for 167 yards and two TDs in addition to catching a 29-yard pass and the two kickoff returns, said it’s not difficult to understand what the Bronchos have to fix if they want to win.
“We’ve driven the ball on everybody this year, but we’ve had to work on finishing drives,” Green said. “In practice, we focused on finishing drives after we were tired. That’s the game. We had a few plays in the red zone that we couldn’t put in tonight.
“We always make big plays. We have playmakers, but we get undisciplined when we get in the red zone. I don’t know what it is.”
Hamilton Southeastern (4-1), which led 14-0 before Jeff ran a play from scrimmage and got 25 carries for 193 yards and three TDs from senior running back Hunter Hardee, finished with 267 rushing yards to go with 144 passing yards from quarterback Tyler Janney.
Jeff coach Andy Kennedy said HSE is an impressive offense.
“Offensively, they kind of punched us in the mouth a little bit,” Kennedy said. “I thought for the first time in five games, our opponent was more physical than our defense. Before that, I felt our defense stepped up and met the challenge.
“Then, our special teams have been up and down for us all year. Tonight, we got the two big kickoff returns, and then we had the bad snap on a punt that came at a critical time. We could have gone in at halftime down no more than nine, and we end up down 12. Offensively, (HSE) is the best football team we have played, no doubt about that. They have a lot of weapons.”