High School Sports

Why Gulfport Admirals suffered first loss of 2016 football season

Gulfport quarterback Cleveland Ford
Gulfport quarterback Cleveland Ford Ttisbell@sunherald.com

Gulfport had no answer for De La Salle’s spread option attack.

Quarterback Julien Gums rushed for 144 yards and scored three touchdowns as the Cavaliers prevailed 35-13 on Friday night at Milner Stadium.

The Admirals (2-1) suffered their first loss to De La Salle, a Class 3A team in Louisiana.

“I give all the credit to my offensive line,” Gums said. “I’m proud of them. I fought through cramps the whole night.”

The Admirals took a 7-0 lead on Cleveland Ford’s 18 yard touchdown run midway in the first quarter.

Gulfport was in position to get the ball at the Cavaliers’ 15 yard line. Punter Raekwon Thomas dropped the ball and eluded two Admirals en-route to a 13 yard gain and De La Salle first down.

Gums’ 8-yard TD run tied the game at 7-7 after one quarter.

Gulfport tried a fake punt at its own 25, but the Cavaliers stuffed the play.

Gums’ three-yard TD run gave the Cavaliers a 14-7 lead. He had 71 yards on 15 carries in the first half.

The Admirals only had 77 yards of total offense at halftime. The Admirals finished with 200 yards of total offense.

“They wanted it more than we did,” Admirals coach Eddie Pierce said. “They whipped us upfront and hit us right in the mouth. They’ve got a good team, but we’ll bounce back.”

De La Salle extended its lead to 21-7 on Ricco Wheat Jr.’s 3-yard TD run.

The Admirals answered on Ford’s 58 yard TD pass to Trey Scott, cutting the gap to 21-13 after three quarters.

De La Salle (2-0) scored twice in the fourth quarter to put the game out of reach.

Gums scored on a 18 yard TD run with 6:55 left.Wheat’s 2 yard run with 1:19 left closed the scoring.

“We expected a physical game and a war,” Cavaliers coach Ryan Manale said. “Gulfport has a great defensive front. We took control in the fourth quarter.”