Voices roared through the Death Valley on Oct. 25, as LSU pulled off the unthinkable upset, but over the joyous cheers one could still hear the loud cracking noise coming from the hearts of the Ole Miss team and fans left dumbfounded in the stadium. Hundreds of St. Paul’s students and alumni were there and rejoiced as they got to storm the field two nights in a row, after SPS beat Covington High the night before.
Before the LSU game, no one thought LSU would win the way they did. Sure, they were picked for the upset, but not an ESPN classic upset.
In the first quarter, LSU had a difficult time finishing drives. First, Colby Delahouse missed his first field goal in his career, then Leonard Fournette fumbled the ball. Now most of the time, this decreases a defense’s morale, and LSU’s defense was low on morale from constant criticism going into the game. However, that was simply not the case.
The defense put pressure on Bo Wallace and controlled the line of scrimmage. On OM’s first drive, the defense forced a punt. Then the defense forced a turnover on downs after a failed fourth down attempt. However, Ole Miss ended the first quarter with a TD pass from Bo Wallace. End of first quarter, 7-0, Ole Miss.
The O-Line must’ve taken notes from the defensive line, because after the end of a scoreless first quarter for LSU, they too were controlling the line of scrimmage. This allowed more success in the running game, which against the land sharks of OM, is crucial. The second quarter was much better for LSU because of this, but it was still very much a back-and-forth type of game.
Right when it seemed LSU’s running game would put up seven points, the ball was stripped from Terrence McGee’s arms. So far, that’s three drives that could have put up points for LSU that were fruitless.
Ole Miss would not score on the drive following the fumble and would be forced to punt. Finally, Fournette and McGee managed to string together a decent drive. It seems that the backs regrouped and helped each other figure out what was wrong, because after that the running game was nothing but clutch. In all fairness, though even on the drives with the fumbles, they were running the ball very well. It just goes to show what great blocking can do.
LSU managed to put up three points. They then got the ball back after forcing a punt, but just ran out the clock for halftime, since there wasn’t enough time left to try and score. Score at halftime, 7-3, OM.
LSU received the ball to start the third quarter, but were forced to punt. Things weren’t any different for OM on their first second-half drive. They, too, were forced to punt. This was the same story for both offenses for their next two drives. Things changed when Anthony Jennings was intercepted. However, the defense stood tall and forced yet another punt. LSU started their drive, but took a quick break for a change in quarters. Both teams held each other to zero points in the third quarter, with the score 7-3 OM going into the fourth quarter.
LSU would wind up punting after switching sides of the field. Surprise, surprise, another OM punt. Jennings would be intercepted once more, but it would have had the same implications to that of an LSU punt. So, after another OM punt, things are getting predictable…until Jennings redeems himself.
The running game drove the ball down the field, this time it was Kenny Hilliard who set the running game’s tone. After the mix up of running styles from Hilliard, Fournette, McGee, and the full back Melvin Jones as well, allowed a nifty play action pass for a TD to give LSU what would become the game winning TD.
Moments later, Bo Wallace would throw an interception that would end the game for OM. However, seconds before that the LSU sideline was jumping up and down screaming, the crowd in sync. It was one of the most beautiful sights an LSU fan could lay eyes on.
So as the game came to a close, it seemed as though the entire stadium stormed the field as cries of joy were made aloud. Pictures from the game, like Trey Quinn crowd surfing and the photo of Leonard Fournette’s face mask getting ripped off will always be historic, but the selfies will always be my personal favorite.
It wasn’t a bad year for OM, after all Rebel fans got to storm the field, too. It is just unfortunate for them they had to play LSU at home. After all, this is where opponents’ dreams come to die.
On Nov. 8, the Tigers will play Alabama. They have not beaten them since 2011 at Tuscaloosa. If they win, and they are primed to win, their chances to improve in the rankings will sky rocket. So, while the chance of rain in Tiger Stadium is “never,” there is no doubt people will pour out of the stadium and storm the field again if they pull off yet another upset.
This will follow SPS’s final district match against Fontainebleu High at the Dawg Pound on Friday, Nov. 7. With Fontainebleu currently ranked sixth in district, compared to SPS in third, students and alumni alike hope to see repeat back-to-back wins again this weekend.
(SPS video by alumnus, Mark Dixon)