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Football: Second Half Rally Gives Cajuns Homecoming Victory

LAFAYETTE Jamal Robinson finished with a team-high 92 yards receiving, 64 coming on a late touchdown pass from Brooks Haack, as the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns football team rallied for a 30-24 victory over in-state rival ULM in the 70th Homecoming Game.
The Cajuns (3-4, 2-1 Sun Belt) began their comeback with a score on the first possession of the second half. Haack brought the Cajuns into Warhawks territory with a 15-yard rush to the ULM 37. A pair of Torrey Pierce runs covering 32 yards put the Cajuns in a goal-line situation, and two plays later Elijah McGuire bulldozed his way into the endzone, slicing ULM’s lead to 24-16 at the 10:50 mark of the third.
A series of defensive stops ensued until the Cajuns’ special teams came up with blocked punt that was recovered by Montrel Carter at the ULM 16. After failing to get a first down on the ensuing series, a roughing the kicker penalty by the Warhawks gave the Cajuns new life, and they took advantage as Haack later scored on a 13-yard run to make it a 24-22 ballgame.
ULM (1-7, 0-4 Sun Belt) maintained the lead after Stevie Artigue missed a 37-yard field with 6:18 remaining, but was unable to move the chains and was forced to give the ball back to the Cajuns with 3:20 to play.
It took the Cajuns one play to go ahead for good as Haack connected with Robinson on the 64-yard touchdown play. After McGuire scored on a two-point conversion, the Cajuns led 30-24.
The Cajuns defense made their seventh and final stand of the second half when Mario Osborne forced a fumble on a sack of Garrett Smith, which was recovered by LaDarrus Kidd with 1:38 to play.  
After ULM called its final two timeouts, McGuire preserved the win running over the right tackle to convert on a third and short.
Louisiana defeated ULM for the seventh time in the past eight meetings and increased its series lead to 27-24. The Ragin’ Cajuns won their Homecoming game for the fifth straight season, remaining undefeated in the contest under Mark Hudspeth.
The Cajuns defense limited the Warhawks to five first downs and 106 yards of offense in the decisive second stanza. Dominque Tovell led the charge finishing with 12 tackles (10 solo) and two of the team’s five sacks.
Haack completed 6-of-11 passes for 85 yards during the second half rally.
Robinson’s 92 yards receiving moved him into fifth place on the all-time list at 2,166, moving head of Javone Lawson (2,107) and Wade Butler (2,076). He trails Ladarius Green (2,201) by 35 yards for fourth place.s
The Cajuns’ defense wasted no time making an impact on the game after Tracy Walker forced Kaylon Watson to fumble at their ULM 26 to give the Louisiana offense a short field on their first drive.
Artigue’s field goal attempt from 40 yards out split the uprights to put the Cajuns in the lead on the ensuing drive.
The Warhawks answered on their next possession, finishing 2-of-3 on third down and capping off the drive with a 27-yard passing score to wide receiver Marcus Green on fourth down to take a 7-3 advantage with just over eight minutes remaining in the opening stanza.
After a three-and-out by the Cajuns offense deep in their own territory, ULM took over at the Louisiana 29-yard line. After a fumbled play and a sack on second and third down, respectively, Warhawks quarterback Smith found wide receiver Ajalen Holley for a 29-yard score, upping the ULM lead to 14-3 after the first quarter.
The Cajuns cut the lead to 14-9 with field goals on their next two possessions, but ULM responded with a quick two-play 60-yard scoring drive on a touchdown catch by Watson with 6:14 remaining in the first half.
After holding the Cajuns to a three-and-out, the Warhawks used a 14-play, 63 yard drive covering 4:31 to consume the remainder of the time remaining in the opening half. A 29-yard field goal by Craig Ford increased ULM’s lead to 24-9.