September 28, 2013
Green Wave dominates Warhawks
MONROE _ Tulane's long wait for anything resembling success may be over.
In one of the most dramatic one-year reversals imaginable, the Green Wave ran around, over and through ULM on Saturday night, routing the Warhawks 31-14 at Malone Stadium. Tulane, a two-touchdown underdog, improved to 3-2 for the first time since 2003 and is halfway to becoming bowl eligible for the first time since 2002. ULM dropped to 2-3.
Last season, ULM embarrassed Tulane 63-10 in the Superdome, holding the Green Wave to minus-9 yards rushing and letting starting quarterback Kolton Browning rest after he put the Warhawks ahead 42-3 with a touchdown drive to start the second half.
This time, Tulane was administering all of the punishment, beating the Warhawks with a ground-bound offense and knocking out Browning in the third quarter after going ahead 24-0. The score wasn't as lopsided as a year ago, but the feeling was about the same.
"It just goes to show how far we've come," Tulane coach Curtis Johnson said. "You could have never told me after we played that game last year we'd be on the road and we'd win this game going away. Our players really believe in what we're doing, and they didn't flinch. They had no fear. They came up here and they took care of their business."
ULM was on the business end of a beating.
A year after averaging fewer than 40 rushing yards, Tulane ran right at the Warhawks, gaining 253 yards on 53 attempts. The Wave set the tone with six consecutive rushes on its opening drive, leading to a 56-yard field goal by Cairo Santos, and kept pounding the Warhawks.
Tulane went ahead 10-0 in the second quarter with a 48-yard drive, getting all but six of those yards on the ground. Dante' Butler and Orleans Darkwa had back-to-back 9-yard gains, and Rob Kelley finished off the series with a powerful 8-yard run and then a 7-yard effort when he carried defenders into the end zone after being stopped short of the goal line.
The Green Wave started the second half the same way, moving 75 yards in five plays with every yard coming on the ground. Darkwa broke loose for a 54-yard gain on a draw play to the ULM 13 -Tulane's longest since Darkwa's 64-yarder against Houston on Nov. 10, 2011-then walked into the end zone for a 1-yard score as the Wave went ahead 17-0.
Darkwa finished with 17 carries for 118 yards for Tulane's first 100-yard performance since that same Houston game.
"I told CJ, if I don't have 100, put me back in there," he said. "I really wanted to get it. It feels good, but all the backs played well today. Our goal was 300 yards. We could have done even better, but we just have to carry this momentum on to the next game."
...More... To continue reading this article you must be a member. Sign Up Now for a FREE Trial