Bishop LeBlond rang in homecoming with a hard-fought game in front of its home crowd Friday night.
The Golden Eagles hosted the Liberal Bulldogs on a chilly evening at Eagle Stadium, full of fans wrapped in jackets and blankets.
Despite losing 68-55, LeBlond lit up the scoreboard like the fireworks show presented after the game.
The Eagles (1-4) struggled in the first quarter, allowing three touchdowns. However, the home team turned things in the following quarter, scoring three touchdowns of its own in about 15 minutes.
“We’ve been slow off the start most games and then we really kick it into drive once we’re down. We got a little pep talk and changed our mentality and stepped it up,” senior Caden Stevenson said.
It all started with junior Fred Lageschulte scoring LeBlond’s first touchdown of the night. The Eagles struck again just minutes later when Stevenson ran the ball in for a touchdown. With less than 30 seconds left in the quarter, freshman quarterback Landon Gardner found his way into the endzone for a 3-yard touchdown.
“We blocked better,” LeBlond head coach Eric Fairchild said. “Whenever we were able to block and give Landon more time, he was able to make plays.”
Stevenson scored a total of four touchdowns on the night.
“Caden is a tough kid. He plays hard and he’s one of those kids that really makes your job fun,” Fairchild said.
The Bulldogs (4-2) opened the second half scoring. Senior Corey Harney ran for a 19-yard touchdown nine minutes into the third quarter.
The Eagles respond with a 39-yard touchdown courtesy of senior Hunter Heck. After a failed extra-point attempt, the Eagles trailed the Bulldogs 38-25.
Though the Eagles made a comeback, the early deficit was too large to catch up to in the end.
LeBlond struggled with several injuries Friday night, leaving them undermanned.
“We didn’t have all of our defensive linemen in so that hurt us a lot,” Stevenson said.
“We had a lot of kids that ended up getting hurt. The kids kept battling and that’s all you can really ask for,” Fairchild said.