No.8 SLU heads home to welcome McNeese on Saturday

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Southeast No.8 (6-1, 4-0 SLC) vs. McNeese (3-4, 2-2 SLC)
October 30, 2021 | 6 p.m. Strawberry Stadium | Hammond, La.

Series history: McNeese leads, 25-22
Last meeting: Southeastern 38, McNeese 35 (October 2, 2021 | Lake Charles, Louisiana)
Television: ESPN3
Moderators: Jace Lejeune, Lonn Ellzey and Caroline Fussell
Radio: Kajun 107.1 FM, Highway 104.7 FM, The boss 103.7 FM / 1400 AM
Advertisers: Mark Willoughby, Robbie Rhodes and Allen Waddell
Live video | Live sound | Live Statistics | SLU Play Notes | McNeese Play Notes | Southland Game Notes

HAMMOND, Louisiana – Southeast Louisiana’s No.8 football team returns home on Saturday, welcoming Conference foe Southland McNeese at 6 p.m. at Strawberry Stadium.

The game between the Lions (6-1, 4-0 Southland) and the Visiting Cowboys (3-4, 2-2 Southland) will be televised on ESPN3, while also being heard in the Hammond area on Kajun 107.1 FM, The Highway 104.7 FM and The Boss 103.7 FM / 1400 AM, as well as online at www.kajun107.net. Fans are encouraged to wear green as part of the McDonald’s sponsored “Wear Green, Eat Gold” promotion.

Southeastern enters Saturday’s game on a five-game winning streak. The Lions, who had their best start at Southland since 2014 and posted their best overall score in seven games since 1980, rose to eighth in the Stats Perform and AFCA Coaches FCS Top 25 polls after a 51-14 win at North West State. The Lions’ 10th straight win over the Demons presented SLU’s largest margin of victory in 65-game series history.

Southeastern erased an early 7-0 deficit and scored 51 straight points, racking up 621 total yards in the win over NSU. The reigning senior quarterback and Walter Payton Award winner Cole kelley connected with 11 different receivers, collecting 347 passing yards and three touchdowns on 21 of 32 passes.

Kelley found Nolan givan, Ivan Drobocky and Jahmon mcclendon on touchdown throws, while Gage Larvadain shot in an 88 yard touchdown pass from Cephus Johnson III. Kelley and Jessie britt each scored touchdowns in the victory.

Ranking in the top three nationally in eight different categories, SLU is averaging 576.9 yards and 50.7 points per game this season. Protected by an offensive line that gave up the second-fewest tackles for losses in the country, Kelley, the national leader in completion percentage, points in charge and total offense, threw for 2,742 yards, 26 touchdowns and five. interceptions on 210-for -290 passing. Kelley also leads Southeastern with eight rushing TDs, while her teammates Taron jones (four), Johnson III (three) and Britt (two) also scored several rushing touchdowns.

A total of 16 different receivers caught passes, 10 of which caught touchdowns. Austin mitchell (41 catches, 590 yards, 6 TD) and Givan (30-291-2 TD) were SLU’s most prolific receivers. CJ Turner (five), Nick kovacs (three), Larvadain (three), Tim Wilson Jr. (two), Johnson III (two) and Drobocky (two) all received multiple scores. Mitchell is second in program history and fifth among active FCS players with 2,555 career receiving yards – 225 short of SLU’s all-time record.

The Lion defense limited NSU in Saturday’s win and the effort was marked by an interception return of 52 yards for a touchdown by Justin dumas and Zy Alexandre third interception of the year, the best team. Alphonse taylor and Brandon barbee shared the team’s honors with seven tackles.

Opponents are averaging 29.1 points and 389.1 yards per game against the Lions. Alexis ramos leads the team with 43 tackles, followed by Taylor (33), Herman Christophe (27), Donniel Ward-Magee (22), Mike mason (21) and Matt wright (21).

Southeastern enters Saturday’s contest ranked fourth nationally with 12 interceptions and third in the FCS with three defensive touchdowns. Alexander leads the team’s interception standings, while Dumas and Taylor have two apiece. Beard, Jack Henderson, Ferlando Jordan, Justin douglas and Terrell Carter also have interceptions for the Lions.

On special teams, Larvadain takes the FCS No.2 kickoff return average to 32.7 yards per kickoff return. Mateo rengifo is a perfect 5-for-5 on field goals, while Austin Dunlap is averaging 42.7 yards per punt.

Saturday’s game will be a clash between the two hottest teams in the Southland Conference, as McNeese comes off victories over Northwestern State and then No. 16 UIW. The 28-20 victory over the Cardinals saw the Cowboys win National Team of the Week Stats Perform FCS honors and gave McNeese his 200th Southland Conference victory.

Quarterback Cody Orgeron (110 for 181, 1316 yards, 10 TD, 2 INT) leads a McNeese offense with an average of 24.6 points and 313.6 yards per game. Josh Matthews (25 catches, 308 yards, 3 TD) and Mason Pierce (18-238-3 TD) are Orgeron’s best targets in the passing game, while Stephon Huderson (308 yards, 3 TD) and Deonta McMahon (216-3 TD) pace the Cowboy ground attack.

The opponents are averaging 411.7 yards and 29.4 points per outing against the McNeese defense. All-American Isaiah Chambers leads the way with 9.5 tackles for a loss and 6.5 sacks, while Kordell Williams has a team-high 67 tackles.

Saturday will be the second meeting between the Lions and the Cowboys this season. Returning Oct. 2 to Lake Charles, SLU pushed back a late Cowboys rally for a 38-35 victory.

Southeastern will close its regular season road program next Saturday, traveling to No.22 UIW for a 2pm contest in San Antonio, TX. The match will be televised on ESPN3, while also being heard in the Hammond area on Kajun 107.1 FM, The Highway 104.7 FM and The Boss 103.7 FM / 1400 AM, as well as online on www.kajun107.net..

TICKETS
For more information on tickets, contact the Southeastern Athletics box office at (985) 549-5466 or visit www.LionSports.net. Southeastern will continue to offer mobile ticketing as the primary source for obtaining tickets for the 2021-22 season. All tickets will be available via email or text in PDF format for fans to download to their phones or print at home. Tickets can also be downloaded from Apple Wallet.

SOCIAL MEDIA
For more information on Southeastern football, follow @LionUpFootball and @Coach_Scelfo on Twitter, like / SLUathletics on Facebook, and subscribe to the SLUathletics YouTube channel.

CLUB / S TOUCHDOWN CLUB
Fans interested in becoming active supporters of the football program are encouraged to join the Touchdown Club. Former Lion football players are encouraged to join the exclusive Club S, which is reserved for South East athletics letter winners.

All Touchdown Club and S Club (football) membership fees and donations are available for the exclusive use of the South East Football Program. Membership information is available by contacting the Lion Athletics Association at [email protected] or (985) 549-5091 or by visiting www.LionUp.com.

TRANSPARENT BAG POLICY
Southeastern Athletics has instituted a clear bag policy for all paid events, starting at the start of the 2018 football season. For more information on the clear bag policy, visit www.LionSports.net/clear.


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