Griffins blow away Evangel in season opener

Kyle Riviere
Gonzales Weekly Citizen
Dutchtown’s Dylan Sampson races 75 yards for a score in the Griffins’ 38-7 victory over Evangel Christian.

After having games canceled for the past two weeks, Dutchtown was finally able to open the season on its brand-new artificial field turf on Friday night.

And despite it being the Griffins’ first game of 2021, they were impressive in what became a thorough drubbing of Evangel Christian, 38-7.

“It looked like a group that was under the lights for the first time. It looked like all of the mistakes that we would have gotten out at the jamboree,” Dutchtown head coach Guy Mistretta said. “With that said, I thought we came out early on and really took it to them. The guys were energized and really played well.”

Dutchtown had its jamboree canceled at the last minute when the LHSAA ruled that Griffin opponent, East Ascension could not participate due to an altercation that occurred in its scrimmage against Central the week prior.

And the Griffins’ week-one game against Northshore was canceled due to the aftermath of Hurricane Ida.

But Dutchtown didn’t look rusty on Friday night

The Griffins promptly drove 71 yards in 13 plays on their opening drive and took a 7-0 lead after a 13-yard touchdown run by Tennessee commit Dylan Sampson.

Dutchtown’s defense then came alive as AK Burrell intercepted a pass and returned it to the Evangel 44. Five plays later, Sampson scored from two yards out to make it 14-0.

The Eagles responded by driving deep into Griffin territory, but the scoring threat ended with an interception by Alvin Lewis.

Three plays later, Sampson received a handoff and hit a brick wall at the line of scrimmage, but he stayed on his feet. He was able to stiff-arm a defender and break free. Sampson galloped down the sideline for a 75-yard score that gave Dutchtown a 21-0 halftime lead.

Things kept getting worse for Evangel. On its opening drive of the third quarter, Tanner Vadnais picked off a pass and returned it for a score to extend the Griffin lead to 28-0.

On the Eagles’ next drive, they fumbled the ball away, and Burrell recovered it. That led to a 27-yard field goal by Jacob Etter to make it 31-0.

Up 31-7 in the fourth, Dutchtown put its final score on the board. Jaedon Brown ran it in from three yards out to make it 38-7.

The Griffin defense held Evangel to just 184 total yards. The Eagles didn’t have a single rushing yard.

Dutchtown’s rushing game was dominant.

Sampson led the way with 146 yards and three scores on 14 carries. Quarterback Pierson Parent added 81 yards, and Baylor Langlois chipped in with 35.

But Coach Mistretta said the offense still needs work.

“We certainly need to work on the passing game,” Mistretta said. “That’s something that we’re always working on, especially with Dylan. Everybody’s going to try to key on him, so we’ve got to do a better job of that. But tonight’s all about fixing the mistakes and getting that stuff handled.”

Of the Griffins’ 340 total yards, just 56 came through the air.

Coach Mistretta said that it was good to finally get on the field and work out the kinks in live-game action.

“We needed to make the mistakes,” Mistretta said. “Until you make them, you’re not going to fix them. And you have to make them here. As much as we fix stuff at practice, until they see it in the game film, it just changes so much. That’s what we needed, and that’s what we got.”