Cards look to topple the Raiders in 11-4A battle

Published 5:57 am Wednesday, October 24, 2018

BRIDGE CITY — After facing two wide-open passing attacks in their first two District 11-4A Division I action, the Bridge City Cardinals will look to turn the tide when they welcome in the run-happy Lumberton Raiders Friday night at Ward Stadium.

The Cardinals (1-6, 0-2) are coming off a tough 41-16 road defeat at Huffman last week. Meanwhile, the Raiders (4-3, 2-0) have won two straight games to start district play. They hammered winless Livingston 48-11 last week after barely getting by Huffman 38-31 in overtime the first week.

Bridge City has allowed eight touchdown passes the last two weeks, four each to Huffman and LC-M, who they fell to 33-14 in their 11-4A opener.

The Cardinal defense will try to slow down some big plays that have hampered them all season after they allowed four TD passes that went for 20 yards or more at Huffman last week.

The Cardinals will look to amp it up on offense after averaging just 10.1 points a game.

Bridge City moved the ball well at times against Huffman with their biggest play coming on a 40-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Cace Skinner to Jackson Tims while fullback Andy Lara added a bruising four-yard touchdown.

The Cardinals will look to get their running game on track against a Raider defense that is allowing 23.6 points a game behind the efforts of Lara, Skinner and tailbacks Rylan Ply and Gavin Villanueva. The Raiders returned 10 starters on defense off last year’s 4-5 Class 5A unit.

The Raiders, who have made the move down from the Class 5A ranks, were the early preseason favorites to win the district and have proved it early.

Lumberton was down 24-7 to Huffman in their district opener before staging a late rally to earn the win.

The Raiders are doing it without their standout quarterback Jace Bridges, who was lost in non-district play for the rest of the season with a leg injury after sparking their Multiple Wing offense as a junior last year.

However, Lumberton has found its footing, especially the last two weeks behind sophomore quarterback Drake Boykin.

Running backs Mason Williams and Justin Conway have both been solid running behind a solid offensive line while receiver Kaleb Carr has been a nice deep threat.

The Cardinals will remain at home next week when they host Livingston while the Raiders return home to host Splendora.

In other 11-4A action Friday, LC-M (2-5, 1-1) is at Livngston (0-7, 0-2) and Splendora (6-1, 2-0) hosts Huffman (3-4, 1-1).