The Rayne Wolves tallied their first win of the season Friday night in their season opener blowing past the St. Edmund Blue Jays, 34-7.
“It took a total team effort to get the job done and they did it well. We just can’t come out flat in the first quarter every week” were head coach Curt Ware’s words after the impressive win. But he was right, his Wolves started out sluggish but finished strong to defeat the Blue Jays.
The Wolves received the ball to start the game and despite a big first play, struggled and stalled and were forced to punt. The Blue Jays however started strong on offense putting together an impressive drive until Danny Harmon got his hands on a St. Ed’s pass and brought it down for an interception to give Rayne the ball at the Rayne 37. That’s when the sparks started to fly for the Wolves as RJ Buchanan took the second play of the drive around the left side 60 yards to break the 0-0 tie. The extra point split the uprights to put the Wolves ahead 7-0.
St. Edmund’s ensuing drive started at the 26 and the Rayne defense comes up big to force them back for a three and out punt from the 21. The Wolves took over at their own 38 where this time Jalen Williams showed he could run himself with a 62 yard touchdown on the first play of the drive.
This time Manuel’s kick sailed wide for a 13-0 Rayne lead. A good kick and coverage pinned the Blue Jays deep in their own territory when the Wolf defense showed they can put up points too, sacking the quarterback in the end zone for a safety to extend the lead 15-0.
But the Blue Jays showed they may be down, but not out as QB David Lafleur put the team on his back and carried the ball for first down after first down until he finally punched it in from 9 yards out to put St. Edmund on the board 15-7.
The Wolves began to put together a nice drive to answer the St. Edmund attack, but got in their own way as the ball hit the turf and a Blue Jay defender jumped on it inside St. Edmund’s 20. The Blue Jays could not capitalize on the turnover however, and punt the ball back to the Wolves as the first half ran out.
The Blue Jays began the second half with some action, getting a quick first down until RJ Buchanan jumped in front of a David Lafleur pass to start the Wolves on their first drive at their own 35.
Penalties plagued the Wolves however and they couldn’t capitalize on the Buchanan interception.
Marcantel got off a great punt, pinning the Blue Jays inside their own 10 to start their drive. Another forced three and out set up Leger and the Rayne offense at the St. Ed’s 27. That’s when fullback Brody Bourque took over taking the first play to the 9-yard line and later finishing off the drive with his first touchdown of the night. The PAT was blocked to give a 21-7 score.
After another three and out by the St. Edmund offense, Coach Ware made use of his weapons when Clarence Leger got to the St. Ed’s 38. Leger then handed the ball off to Williams around the right side to get to the 20. Brody Bourque then punched it in from 10 yards out to finish the drive. Another blocked PAT gives Rayne the 27-7 lead.
Rayne’s defense stepped things up and the Blue Jays got desperate as they tried a fake punt, but Rayne’s defensive back Quinn Guidry saw it the whole way and Rayne took over at the St. Ed’s 22.
Not to be outdone by Bourque, Williams took the first play 22 yards into the end zone for his second touchdown of the night. The PAT split the uprights to finalize the score at 34-7 for the Rayne victory.
Offensively, the Wolves dominated totaling 353 yards with 333 of them coming on the ground. Jalen Williams led things with 16 carries for 163 yards and 2 touchdowns, while Brody Bourque totaled 15 carries, 93 yards, and two touchdowns of his own.
RJ Buchanan added his 60-yard touchdown to the mix, as well.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Wolves allowed 184 yards of total offense and just one touchdown, while intercepting two passes.
Billy Marcantel led the way with 14 tackles while Lacy Granger followed closely with 10 tackles and 1 sack.
The Wolves look to keep their winning ways Friday as the Welsh Greyhounds make their way to Wolf Stadium. Come out and support the Rayne High Wolves.