‘They just beat us in all phases’
By CHRIS WHITE
The Columbus Lions set out to shut down Lafayette quarterback Bo Bartik any way they could Saturday night at the Columbus Civic Center, and they found ways to do it from all over the field.
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Columbus sacked Bartik four times and intercepted four of his passes as the Lions rolled to a 54-26 victory in their last home game until June.
“We knew they had a good quarterback who had been in the league for a lot of years,” said Lionsre linebacker Justen Rivers, who had a sack and a fumble recovery that led to a fourth-quarter Lions touchdown. “We knew we were going to have to pressure him into mistakes.”
The Lions (3-1) sacked Bartik for a total loss of 29 yards, and three Columbus defensive backs combined for four interceptions.
Lafayette (0-3) still is searching for its first win and simply was outplayed Saturday, Wildcatters receiver Clyde Edwards said.
“They just beat us in all phases of the game,” Edwards said. “We just have to get back to practice, work hard and think about getting that ‘W’ next week.”
Columbus quarterback Chris McCoy and Tirone Morris hooked up for first-quarter touchdowns, and fullback Melvin Parris ran in a 10-yard lateral pass to put Columbus ahead 21-3 after one quarter.
Bartik found Edwards and Antoine Burks for touchdown passes in the second quarter, and kicker Sean Comiskey added his second field goal of the game, but Columbus always had an answer.
McCoy ran in a 1-yard score and found Gerald Gales with another touchdown pass as the Lions took a 35-20 lead into halftime.
Columbus was coming off a 93-12 victory over a non-SIFL opponent, the North Georgia Bulldogs, and had trouble settling in despite scoring on its first five drives, Morris said.
“It took us a while to get in the rhythm,” Morris said. “We were playing an SIFL team again, and we were a little excited at first.”
Parris tacked on a 2-yard touchdown run for the only score of the third quarter before Bartik ran in a 4-yard touchdown early in the fourth period to make it 41-26. But Columbus added a 36-yard Crum field goal, a 6-yard Preston McGann touchdown reception and a safety to hold on for the win.
McCoy was 17-for-34 passing for 253 yards and four touchdowns. Bartik was 15-for-38 for 234 yards and two touchdowns and was intercepted four times.
Columbus next plays Friday at the Greenville Force. The Lions don’t have another home game until they hosts the Albany Panthers on June 5.
Saturday at the Civic Center
Lafayette 3 17 0 6 — 26
Columbus 21 14 6 13 — 54
C — Trey Crum uno, 15:00
C — Tirone Morris 2 pass from Chris McCoy (Crum kick), 11:19
L — Sean Comiskey 51 field goal, 7:51
C — Morris 35 pass from McCoy (kick failed), 5:44
C — Melvin Parris 10 run (Crum kick), 1:41
L — Clyde Edwards 26 pass from Bo Bartik (Comiskey kick), 13:33
C —McCoy 1 run (Crum kick), 10:52
L —Antoine Burks 35 pass from Bartik (Comiskey kick), 9:12
C — Gerald Gales 9 pass from McCoy (Crum kick), 7:11
L — Comiskey 42 field goal, 3:25
C — Parris 2 run (kick failed), 8:05
L — Bartik 4 run (kick failed), 13:17
C — Crum 36 field goal, 7:01
C — Preston McGann 6 pass from McCoy (Morris pass from McCoy), 2:34
C — Safety, 2:27
Team records: Lafayette 0-3; Columbus 3-1. Next: Lafayette vs. Louisiana Swashbucklers, Saturday; Columbus at Greenville Force, Friday.