Lufkin Bounces Back with Victory Against Rival Nacogdoches
LUFKIN -- Sophomore QB Jordan Moore accounted for 289 yards and four touchdowns and a vaunted Lufkin defense lived up to the billing as the Panthers stormed to a 45-7 win over the Nacogdoches Dragons at John Outlaw Memorial Field at Abe Martin Stadium on Friday night.
Moore threw for 212 yards and three scores on 15-of-23 passing and also ran for 77 yards and another score on nine carries as the Panthers bounced back from a tough season-opening loss by dismantling their oldest rival.
“We got after them on both sides of the ball tonight,” Lufkin head coach Todd Quick said. “I was happy that we got going and didn’t let up. We didn’t want another game like last week.”
Titan Williams had seven receptions for 89 yards and a pair of scores, and Qu’vontae Smallwood scored on a 52-yard touchdown run and caught two passes for 57 yards and another touchdown.
However, the story of the night was a Lufkin defense that was stellar throughout the night. After holding Nacogdoches to 139 yards and seven points in the first half, it was even better after the break when the Dragons were held to a total of 15 yards.
“We played a lot of guys over there and they all played hard,” Quick said. “It was good to see that from so many guys.
Playing in front of the home crowd for the first time in 2018, Lufkin wasted little time in taking control of the Dragons in a dominating first half.
Lufkin got on the board first as it took advantage of a Nacogdoches special teams miscue with a Jordan Moore 16-yard touchdown run for an early 7-0 advantage.
Nacogdoches had a quick answer with its best drive of the first half, which culminated with a Camorian Thacker three-yard touchdown run that knotted the game at 7-7.
Lufkin then used the big play to get back on the board as Ja’Lynn Polk caught a 29-yard reception that helped set up a spectacular 43-yard touchdown reception for Moore, putting Lufkin ahead 14-7.
Lufkin forced a turnover on downs on the next drive before Williams made a spectacular eight-yard touchdown reception for a 21-7 lead with 4:05 left in the second quarter.
That lead grew to 28-7 late in the first half as Caleb Berry was hit near the line of scrimmage before keeping his feet and running for a 13-yard touchdown run.
In the opening half, Jordan Moore threw for 161 yards and two touchdowns on 12-of-18 passing. He also ran for 43 yards on six carries. Williams led Lufkin’s receivers with seven catches for 89 yards.
Meanwhile, Nacogdoches was held to a total of 129 yards, including just 20 on the ground.
Lufkin’s defense started the second half with a three and out and Qu’vontae Smallwood ran for a 52-yard drive two plays later that extended the margin to 35-7 with 10:26 left in the third quarter.
The Lufkin lead grew to 42-7 when Smallwood caught a screen pass from Moore and ran 37 yards for a score on the first play of the fourth quarter.
Leo Acevedo added an 18-yard field goal in the final two minutes, making the score 45-7.
Lufkin (1-1) will be back in action on Friday night as it hosts Monterrey Prepa Tec.