The Cajuns Explode In The Second Half To Beat Marshall On The Road
It was a Wednesday night matchup between the Ragin' Cajuns of Louisiana and the Thundering Herd of Marshall. The Cajuns came into the Nationally televised game with a record of 2-3 and looking to snap a three-game losing streak. The Herd hasn't been consistent throughout the 2022 season as well as coming in with a 3-2 record after getting a huge upset win over Notre Dame in week 2. The stage for a pivotal Sun Belt matchup was set, let's see how the game went.
The Herd won the coin toss and chose to defer until the second half, giving the Cajun offense the ball first. Ben Wooldridge would get his first start for the Cajuns with Chandler Fields still out with injury.
The Cajuns would have a huge play wiped out due to an offensive pass interference penalty which lead to an eventual three and out for the Cajuns. The outstanding Cajun defense, who is third in the country in turnovers, didn't allow Marshall much as Andre Jones would force a punt after a huge sack on third down.
Ben Wooldridge connected a couple of big plays to Cajun receivers to get Louisiana deep into Marshall territory. The offense would stall and set up a 42-yard Kenny Almendares field goal. The Cajuns would take a 3-0 lead with just over eight minutes to play.
The Cajuns' defense would go right back to work and force a three-and-out, giving Wooldridge and the Cajuns' offense the ball back. The Cajuns would get just past mid-field before facing a fourth-down and four. The Cajuns left the offense on the field and would turn it over on downs after Mashall forced Wooldridge's pass incomplete. The Herd would face a fourth down of their own, but they would convert to get into Cajun territory.
The quarter would come to an end with the Herd driving and Louisiana leading 3-0.
The Herd would start the second quarter facing another fourth down deep in Cajun territory. Marshall would convert the second fourth and short on this drive to keep the chains moving. The Cajun defense would set the Marshall offense back with a big sack from Zy'ion Hill-Green. The defense would force a 45-yard field goal attempt but it was no good.
Wooldridge and the Cajun offense would go back to work and quickly get into Marshall territory with a completion to Rogers. The Cajuns' drive would stall out and give the Herd the ball back with 9:35 left to play in the half.
Marshall would go back to work on offense and quickly got deep into Cajun territory with a huge completion to Gambadge. A huge roughing the passer penalty would set Marshall up inside the Cajun five. Laborn would take it in for the Herd touchdown on the very next play to take their first lead, 7-3 with just over four minutes to go.
The Cajuns would go three and out on their next possession, giving the Herd the ball with just two minutes to play in the half. Marshall would get the ball into Cajuns' territory before facing a fourth and two. The Herd wouldn't go for it as they would punt it back to the Cajuns. The Cajuns would run the clock out and go into halftime trailing Marshall 7-3.
After a thirty-minute lightning delay, the Herd would go back to work as they would receive to start the second half. Marshall would get off to a hot start after returning the kickoff deep into Cajun territory. The Marshall momentum wouldn't last long as the Herd pass was intercepted by Bralen Trahan.
The Cajuns almost didn't capitalize on the turnover as they would have gone three and out, but a penalty on Marshall would set up a fourth and short for Louisiana. The Cajuns would go for and convert. The very next play, Wooldridge would hit John Stephens deep to get the Cajuns inside the Herd 10. Two plays later, Wooldridge would hit Flemming for the go-ahead touchdown. Cajuns led 10-7 with 10:30 to go in the third quarter.
The Cajuns' defense continued to play big as a huge sack from Chris Moncrief would force Marshall to punt. The Cajuns would go back to work from deep in their territory. Wooldridge would get hot as he would hit Neal Johnson for a big gain to get Louisiana deep into Herd territory. The Cajuns would get into the red zone before stalling out, forcing a 34-yard field goal. Almendares would add three more to give the Cajuns a 13-7 lead with 4:44 left In the third.
The defense stayed hot as well as they would force a second straight three and out to give Wooldridge and the Cajun offense the ball back. The Cajuns would get deep in Marshall territory thanks to the legs of Wooldridge, but the drive would stall. Almedares would hit a career-long 52-yard field goal to extend the Cajun lead to 16-7 at the end of the third quarter.
The Thundering Herd would find something on offense as they would quickly throw their way into Cajun territory to begin the fourth quarter. The Cajuns would force the Herd to go for it fourth down, but the defense stuffed Laborn to force a turnover on downs.
The Cajuns would pick up right where they left off and received help from a Marshall targeting penalty to get into Herd territory. Wooldridge would use his legs to convert on a huge third down. The next play, Wooldridge connected with Michael Jefferson for the Cajun touchdown to make it a 23-7 game with less than ten minutes remaining.
Marshall wouldn't go away quietly as they marched 75 yards for a touchdown to cut the Cajun lead 23-13 after a failed two point conversion with 6:52 remaining in the game.
The Cajun wouldn't take much time off of the clock as they would go three and out, giving Marshall the ball back with 4:27 left in the game. The Cajuns' defense would force Marshall to go for it on fourth and five, but the Herd would cough it up and the Cajuns would recover.
The Cajuns would gain a couple of first downs to ice the game away and seal a ten-point road win. The Cajuns snap a three-game losing streak to improve to 3-3 on the season and 1-2 in conference play.