The Comeaux Spartans took advantage of a stingy defense and a strong second half to help them defeat the Westgate Tigers 24-14 in non-district play at Spartan Field on Friday night.
Trailing 7-3 at halftime, Comeaux scored 21 unanswered points in the second half, while the defense kept Westgate out of the end zone until under :10, as the Spartans captured their first win in the Doug Dotson era.
“It feels real good,” said Dotson. “We’ve been working real hard, and last week was a little rough on us. Anytime you implement new stuff, it just takes time, and we just needed this.
“We still won’t be veterans until week three, week four, week five,” said Dotson. “There’s only one thing that makes you better, and that’s game-time experience.”
Comeaux had the first scoring opportunity of the game, forcing a Westgate fumble on the opening kickoff and driving down inside the 5, before coming away empty-handed fter a key penalty and an interception put an end to the drive.
After a scoreless first quarter, the Spartans did wind up scoring first, at the 2:19 mark of the second period hen Grant Emfinger booted through a 41-yard field goal, completing a 9-play, 55-yard drive, giving them a 3-0 lead.
After the Tigers went three-and-out, the Comeaux offense had another shot, but fumbled it away, as Westgate’s Eron Phillips returned it back 32 yards for the score with only :20 left, giving the Tigers a 7-3 lead, one which they took into the break.
Comeaux regained the lead for good at the 3:05 mark of the third quarter when Sherwood Richard scored on a 6-yard touchdown run, capping off a 6-play, 41-yard drive, giving them a 10-7 advantage.
After the Comeaux defense caused a turnover, the Spartans were back in the end zone only three plays and :40 later, thanks to a 2-yard touchdown run be Latrevian Anderson, extending the lead 17-7 at the 11:30 mark of the fourth quarter.
The Spartans put the game out of reach at the 9:01 mark of the final frame when Brett Dotson connected with Austin Toups on a 22-yard scoring strike, making it 24-7.
Westgate scored the last touchdown, on a touchdown pass with under :10 to go, but it wasn’t enough, as Comeaux went on to the 10-point win.
“Our defense played well,” said Dotson. “That’s a shutout for them. You know, the offense gave up the score right before the half, and then our reserves were in when we didn’t cover the receiver there at the end of the game, but our defense played lights out.
“To be honest, we thought our defense played a little soft last week,” said Dotson. “We challenged them this week, and the really stepped up.”
Offensively, Comeaux moved the ball in the second half with a new wrinkle, but one that Dotson learned from one of the masters, his late dad, the great Bill Dotson.
“I know my dad is looking down right now, but we went to the split-back veer,” Dotson said. “Our deal was, if we won it, it was going to be up front with our offensive line, and they really did well.”
With the victory, Comeaux improved to 1-1 on the young season, while Westgate fell to 0-2.
“I’m really thrilled with the win,” Dotson said. “We’re going to enjoy this, but also get back to work soon, and try to keep getting better.”