Nguyen, Dogs keep beat going

Published 12:50 am Saturday, October 24, 2015

NEDERLAND — Friday night was no time to rest for Austin Krautz, but it was a chance for Sean Nguyen to take some of the spotlight.
With a rushing touchdown already to his credit, Nguyen provided a quick answer for Baytown Lee’s first score of the game, sailing 78 yards on the ensuing kickoff to pad Nederland’s lead back to three touchdowns. The Bulldogs stormed to a 35-7 lead after the first quarter and pounded the Ganders 63-10 Friday night to remain undefeated in District 22-5A action.
“Throughout the week, we’ve been putting in the hard work, and it paid off for us,” said Nguyen, who just had three carries for 23 yards, but two of them went for touchdowns to go along with his long kickoff return.
Nederland (6-2, 5-0 in 22-5A) is two wins from its fourth unbeaten conference season in the past five years, and Krautz will have played a large part in the success. The Lamar oral commit had two rushing touchdowns and one receiving in the first half alone and finished with 85 yards on 14 carries.
Krautz made his commitment public just a couple of hours after Nederland edged Port Neches-Groves last Friday to win the Bum Phillips Bowl. But given some more opportunities as his prep career takes off, sophomore Nguyen could turn some heads with speed and athleticism so similar to Krautz’s.
Nguyen handled kick return duties and rushed 14 yards for Nederland’s second touchdown to make it a 14-0 game less than 5 minutes into the contest. Krautz, who had a touchdown catch to put the Bulldogs on the board, rushed from 9 yards out to extend the lead to 21-0.
Lee (0-8, 0-6), which has not come within a touchdown of victory since Week 2, came up with a big play two plays from scrimmage later. Tight end Josh Hockless had a 68-yard catch-and-run.
Two kickoffs rolled out of bounds afterward, but Nguyen shined on the third.
“Coaches always say return [toward the] middle, and I did that,” he said. “The hole was wide open, I hit it, found that all my blocks were there, and touchdown.”
Mitchell LeBaron completed his second of two touchdown passes from 32 yards out to Connor Perkins, and the Bulldogs had a 35-7 lead still with 1:25 left in the opening frame. LeBaron threw for 146 yards completing 7 of 10 passes.
It was 42-10 at halftime after Krautz had two carries for 18 yards to close a seven-play drive from Lee’s 48.
“We were not flat, I can tell you that,” Bulldogs coach Larry Neumann said. “There’s always going to be room for improvement and we’ll be critical about our performance, but all things considered and what you worry about as a coach is not playing well coming off the game. I thought we played pretty well. We’ve still got business, and all our teaching will be on Goose Creek Memorial come Monday.”
Nederland didn’t finish homecoming night without big plays on defense. Tavian Mayfield picked off a pass on Lee’s opening drive of the second half, and Jalen Cunningham took a late interception back 45 yards to finish the scoring.
Speaking of defense, the Bulldogs held the Ganders to 155 total yards. Javarius Irving completed 3 of 11 passes for 109 yards with the touchdown and two interceptions but he was contained for a net of minus-14 yards on seven carries.
Still, Irving unofficially has 2,087 total yards of offense this season.

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About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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