Journal Sports Staff
OPELOUSAS — Natchitoches Central leans on its grinding ground game and typically stout defense, but neither of those areas took their usual forms Friday at Opelousas.
The Tigers surpassed 300 rushing yards and corralled the Chiefs as they handed NCHS a 27-7 loss.
Opelousas (2-0) started the game with two long touchdown drives to set the tone.
The Tigers marched 90 yards on their first scoring drive and 75 yards on the second to snatch a 13-0 lead against the visiting Chiefs (1-1).
The Chiefs turned a short field into their only score of the night as quarterback Lannon Collum connected with receiver Camryn Davis for a 29-yard touchdown.
The 29-yard drive sliced the Opelousas lead 13-7 in the third quarter.
But the Tigers responded two minutes later with a 71-yard touchdown campaign and halted any offensive threat NCHS could muster.
All four Opelousas scoring drives were longer than 50 yards with three more than 70 yards as the Tigers commanded the clock.
Opelousas running back Zay Amos rushed for 185 yards and a touchdown while Da’shaun Ford added two scores with his 90 yards.
Quarterback Zach Malveaux was effective on the ground and in the air, rushing for 50 yards and a touchdown and throwing for another 45 yards on 6-11 passing, just enough to keep NCHS from focusing all of its attention on the running game.
NCHS stuck with its two-quarterback system with sophomores Adam Guillet and Collum (preseason starter B.J. Young has an injured shoulder suffered in the jamboree).
Collum finished with 35 passing yards on 4-6 passing with an interception while Guillet contributed 17 passing yards on 4-11 passing with an interception.
Davis led all receivers with 29 yards on two receptions.
NCHS returns home in Week 3 to host Alexandria Senior High, who dropped to 0-2 after a 42-35 loss to St. Thomas More.