Williams, Allen lead Dogs to win

Louisiana Tech racked up a season-high 504 yards of total offense behind the arm of Aaron Allen and the legs of Marcus Williams, Jr. as the duo helped carry the Bulldogs to a 42-32 victory over Charlotte on Saturday afternoon at Joe Aillet Stadium.

Making just his second start of the season and the sixth of his career, Allen was poised behind center the entire day, completing 78 percent of his passes (21-27) while throwing for a career-high 324 yards and two touchdowns.

“The key to the game offensively was no turnovers and try to eliminate lost yardage plays,” said Tech head coach Skip Holtz. “I thought Aaron Allen was poised, took what the defense gave him and played a really good football game.  He has been patient, been a great teammate.  He certainly earned this and deserved this.”

Meanwhile on the ground, Williams, Jr. was a workhorse with his career-high 29 carries for 131 yards and four rushing touchdowns.

“Marcus Williams was a rock in the run game,” said Holtz. “I thought the wide receivers made some great catches. We were able to put a game plan together and were able to execute on offense. We had some great efforts on defense too. I am proud we were able to get the win.” 

It was the defense though that got LA Tech (3-7, 2-4 C-USA) off on the right foot as Khalil Ladler made a diving interception at the 2-yard line to stop Charlotte (5-5, 3-2 C-USA) in its tracks on their opening drive of the game.

Allen proceeded to lead the offense on a 16-play, 98-yard drive that ended in a 2-yard rushing TD for Williams, Jr.  The senior tacked on his second score, this one from eight yards out with 1:38 left in the second quarter to give the ‘Dogs a 14-7 lead that they took into halftime.

Coming into the game, the offense had struggled in the third quarter with only six total points in the stanza in the last six games combined.  That was not the case against the 49ers as they finished off two quick drives of 75 yards that each took about two minutes. 

The first one was the opening drive of the third quarter that took only five plays to go 75 yards, setup by a 49-yard strike from Allen to Tre Harris and then capped off by Williams, Jr.’s third TD from six yards out.

LA Tech took its biggest lead at 28-10 on its following offensive drive, this one going 75 yards again but only taking four plays this time.  The end of it was Allen connecting with Isaiah Graham a post route down the middle for a 32-yard score.

Charlotte would find its offense late in the third, scoring three touchdowns the rest of the way.  However, the closest they would get was 35-25 early in the fourth when the Bulldogs answered with touchdowns of their own each time – Smoke Harris notched a 17-yard touchdown (one of his team-leading eight receptions) and Williams, Jr. put the exclamation point on the game with a 25-yard scamper for his fourth TD.

Tech will host Southern Miss Friday at 7 p.m. in the final home game of the season for the Bulldogs.

Photo: Tim Smith

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