Lions make school history with their latest victory
Before the season began, third-year Ascension Christian head coach Josh Puryear said that this could be the football program's best year they've ever had. According to the numbers, he was right.
Last Friday night, the Lions dismantled Ecole Classique, 60-6, on the road. In doing so, they captured their fourth victory of the season--which became the new school record for most wins in a single year.
It broke the previous high of three that Ascension Christian had set just last season.
It has truly been a special year for the Lion program.
After starting the season off with a road loss to Gueydan, Ascension Christian reeled off two straight victories over Crescent City and Ridgewood. They out-scored those two opponents by a combined margin of 67-14.
They split their next two games--dropping a home contest to Westminster Christian, before defeating Houma Christian in a 28-27 thriller.
With the 3-2 mark and being on the cusp of history, the Lions faced the greatest adversity of the season.
First, they were blanked, 48-0, by parish foe Ascension Catholic on the road for their district opener. The next week, they were hammered, 57-12, by St. John in another league contest.
Despite being out-scored 105-12 in the two games, Ascension Christian didn't let the tough stretch define what had been a very promising season.
The Lions shook the rough outings and put on a show on their road trip to Ecole Classique. They set the new school record in style--setting the new school mark for most points in a single game with 60.
Quarterback Chris Middleton went 8-14 for 186 yards. He also rushed for 90 yards.
Brye Templet contributed 63 yards on the ground.
Peyton Bahlinger had a big night as he made six grabs for 150 yards.
The Ascension Christian program has steadily improved under Puryear.
When he took over the program in 2013, they were in the midst of a dubious 21-game losing streak that had spanned more than two seasons.
In Puryear's first year, the Lions put an end to that skid by winning two games. They won three games in 2014, and now, they have set a new high for the program with four victories.
In just the seventh season of football, some of the current Lion players have set new career records.
Puryear has become the program's all-time winningest coach.
Middleton has set records for the most career rushing yards and most career rushing and passing touchdowns.
An all-district wide receiver in Bahlinger has set records for most career receptions, yards and touchdowns.
The Lions will play their season finale at home this Friday night against district foe East Iberville.
Once again, they have a chance to make school history.
If they can beat the Tigers for the third straight time, they will not only set the new mark for most wins in a single year, but they will also earn the program's first ever winning season.