Turnover differential decides game between Titans, Bulldogs

Published 11:21 pm Friday, September 2, 2022

The Memorial Titans used a huge third quarter to lift them over the Bulldogs in a 42-21 decision at Memorial Stadium Friday.

The secondary of the Titans recorded seven interceptions en route to the victory.

Nederland (0-2) did not go away quietly. After an early 29-yard strike from Memorial quarterback Davion Wilson to Caleb Goodie gave the Titans a 14-0 lead midway through the first quarter, Bulldogs sophomore running back Hubert Thomas ripped off 75-yard touchdown run to bring Nederland within a score.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

The Bulldogs defense was stout in the first quarter, not allowing many running lanes for the Titans, who gave the ball back to Nederland.

A few plays later, Thomas broke free again for a 69-yard gain to tie the game at 14-14 late in the first quarter.

Thomas finished the game with 173 yards and two scores. Early in the second quarter, Nederland quarterback Adam Trosclair hit a streaking Jake Harvard for a 69-yard touchdown to give the Bulldogs the lead with 10:23 left in the first half.

“They came out and played really well,” Memorial Head Coach Brian Morgan said of Nederland. “They played well up front on both sides. I think our guys came in thinking it was going to be easy because of the scores last week. Nederland is tough and brought it. I think it had us a little shell shocked.”

Morgan credited his team’s senior leadership for not getting overwhelmed.

That was the last time Nederland scored. With less than two minutes left in the first half, Wilson and Goodie connected again; this time for 54 yards to tie the game back at 21-21, which is how the first half ended.

After the halfway mark, the Titans looked closer to how they did last week in their blowout win over Port Neches-Groves. Wilson capped off a 12-play drive with a 1-yard touchdown run to give the Titans a 28-21 lead.

Memorial safety Daevon Iles picked off Nederland at the 3-yard line and walked in for a touchdown to bring the lead to 35-21. On the very next play for the Bulldogs, Iles found the ball again with his third interception of the game and his fourth on the season. He also has two defensive touchdowns on the season.

Nederland Head Coach Monte Barrow said he was proud of the way his team competed.

“Hubert runs hard,” Barrow said. “It was good to see him in full game speed. He got out in the open field and broke a tackle to get into the end zone. I am proud of him. On one of them, I think he went untouched. The line was playing really well… I told them the first half they did everything we could’ve asked. The second half is on me. They weren’t in shape. We had too many kids cramping. We know this area and how it is and we have to fix that.”

Memorial corner Nolan White also had three interceptions on the game.

The final score came late in the third quarter when Wilson broke free on a 37-yard touchdown run.

Both teams ran the clock out in the fourth.

The play of the game was…

With the Bulldogs backed up inside their own 5, Iles said he read the receiver and baited the quarterback into his second pick-six of the season.

“The receiver looked at the quarterback and tapped his leg,” Iles said. “All game, he was waving him off. When he tapped his leg, I knew he was throwing the ball, so I just waited on it.”

The game ball goes to…

Iles and White came away with three picks on the night. The Memorial secondary had seven total with Jakelbe Joseph getting one at the end of the game.

Key stats…

Wilson finished the game with 309 passing yards and Goodie recorded 151 receiving yards. Memorial outgained the Bulldogs 407-317 in yards.

Next up…

The Bulldogs will host the Silsbee Tigers, while the Titans rest up during their bye week before starting district play.

The Bulldogs and Tigers will kickoff at 7 p.m. at Bulldog Stadium.