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October 16, 2013

Cajuns blackout the Hilltoppers



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In the game of football, momentum can be your best friend or your scorn lover.

It was more of the latter Tuesday night for Western Kentucky, suffering a 37-20 defeat at the hands of Louisiana-Lafayette.

That scorn lover for WKU, debilitating turnovers. Four to be exact.

After building a 10-0 lead in the first quarter, Western Kentucky was 1-yard away from extended their lead even further in the second stanza.

Fourth-and-goal at the 1-yard line and Petrino opted to go for it.

It failed, miserably.

Brandon Doughty's rollout pass attempt landed into the hands of Louisiana-Lafayette safety Al Riles, who trotted almost the entire length of the field to put the Cajuns on the scoreboard.

A 99-yard interception return for a touchdown, a fourth-down gamble turned into the absolute worst case scenario for Western Kentucky. That mistake not only gave the Ragin' Cajuns a breath of fresh air, but it gave them new life, and they took full advantage.



Over the next two-and-a-half quarters, Louisiana-Lafayette proceeded to outscore the Hilltoppers 30-3.

The pick-six by Doughty and two Mitchell Henry fumbles where the Cajuns capitalized on great field position were critical momentum turners.

Not even another stellar performance by running back Antonio Andrews (154 rushing yards, 267 all-purpose yards, 1 TD) was enough to overcome the mistakes.

Compound that with Louisiana-Lafayette's second half strategy to pound the rock with Elijah McGuire and Alonzo Harris, a running back combo that Western Kentucky's defense simply could not stop.

The Cajuns gashed the Hilltoppers for 254 rushing yards.

Looks can be slightly deceiving if you glanced at the box score, which Western Kentucky dominated:

24 first downs compared to 18.

471 total yards compared to 344.

338 passing yards compared to 90.

However, the "turnover lost" category is the ultimate tell-tale sign: 4 turnovers for WKU, only 1 for the Cajuns.

And there is the fact that Louisiana-Lafayette scored 20 points off those turnovers.

That's one scorned lover.

Postgame Presser: Bobby Petrino


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