Earp day-to-day, Woodard says

BEAUMONT — The Lamar Cardinals could have both starting quarterbacks available Saturday when they host the Abilene Christian Wildcats.

Lamar coach Ray Woodard said at Monday’s weekly news conference Carson Earp, who started the past three games, is day-to-day with shoulder soreness. Earp left Thursday’s 30-27 loss at Southeastern Louisiana in the second half and was replaced by Joe Minden, who was just cleared after missing the past two games with a hand injury.

“There’s nothing structurally wrong as far as the ligaments and bones and everything,” Woodard said about Earp’s condition, delivering a similar update on Minden. “That’s all good. He’s just very sore and it’s going to be a day-to-day thing. He told me yesterday he felt a lot better than he did the day before, and if he can keep progressing that way, I think he’ll be back in time for the game.”

Woodard said Minden’s appearance Thursday was the most work he’s had on the field since injuring it after the season-opening home win over Bacone College of Oklahoma.

Minden completed 5 of 10 passes for 37 yards, but he led a 13-play, 70-drive that resulted in an Alex Ball field goal to make the score 27-23 with 8 minutes to go. Southeastern (3-1, 2-0 Southland) scored the winning touchdown on a 1-yard Kody Sutton run with 1:19 remaining.

Earp struggled to get the Cardinals (2-2, 1-1) in a rhythm early and was 8-for-18 for 143 yards and a touchdown when he left. Lamar trailed 13-0 before getting on the board in the second period.

Woodard said the inconsistency at quarterback had a little, but not everything, to do with Lamar’s slow start.

“But now, we have two guys trying to heal up, as opposed to a few weeks ago when we were trying to pick one over the other,” he said. “But that’s football season. That’s the thing you deal with.”

The Cardinals’ potential winning drive stalled on downs after running back Kade Harrington took an apparent shot to the head at the end of a 20-yard rush. Just before halftime, Cards safety Seth Ellis was ejected for targeting while making a similar stop. Ellis will not have to miss any part of the Abilene Christian game because he sat out the second half.

“Seth played it like we taught him,” Woodard said. “It happens, and you have a chance to unload on somebody, hit them with the shoulder and hit them below the head, try to do it within the rules. I think he did that. It was within the rules. I did not think it should have been targeting.

“Kade’s, I thought, was helmet-to-helmet, and it should have been called that way. A running back is not considered a defenseless player as opposed to a receiver. That’s an interpretation to a rule. They said Kade was not defenseless.

“There you know. Now, you know what I know.”

 

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