No. 5 LSU Takes Advantage of ULM Mistakes, 51-0
LSU Sports Interactive
BATON ROUGE -- LSU scored 31 points off five Louisiana-Monroe turnovers including an interception and a fumble returned for touchdowns in a 51-0 blowout on Saturday night in Tiger Stadium.
LSU improved to 9-1 under head coach Les Miles for the third time, as the Tigers won on Homecoming for the 10th-straight time. Miles is 23-0 in regular-season non-conference games at LSU.
LSU cornerback Ron Brooks started the scoring with a 32-yard interception return in the first quarter before fellow corner Patrick Peterson setup another score with an 85-yard interception return to the ULM 12.
In the third quarter, defensive end Lavar Edwards returned a fumble 29 yards for a touchdown to give the Tigers multiple defensive touchdowns for the first time since Oct. 12, 1991, against Arkansas State.
In the fourth quarter, safety Craig Loston intercepted ULM backup quarterback Cody Wells on fourth-and-14 at the LSU 28 to preserve the shutout. The Tigers converted the turnover into a Michael Ford 17-yard touchdown after a 10-play drive.
Linebacker Kelvin Sheppard, who forced the fumble that Edwards picked up, had a team-high eight tackles including 1.5 for loss.
When the Tigers couldn't punch in touchdowns, placekicker Josh Jasper booted field goals from all distances. The senior made a career-best 53-yarder - which tied the longest in the SEC this season -- and was also successful from 45 and 29 yards.
With its defense putting the Tigers in a short field for most of the game, LSU managed only 251 yards of total offense. LSU ran 39 times for 156 yards.
Running back Stevan Ridley had 67 yards rushing on 14 carries with two touchdowns, as LSU scored four times on the ground. Senior Richard Murphy added 44 yards while Alfred Blue had 31. Spencer Ware had a 5-yard touchdown run and finished with 12 yards.
Jefferson started and was 4-of-10 for 51 yards while Lee was 4-of-12 for 44 yards. Neither was intercepted. Wide receiver Terrence Toliver led all receivers with 42 yards on three catches.
The Warhawks (4-6) were held to 190 yards of total offense. Quarterback Kolton Browning was 8-of-17 passing for 61 yards with two interceptions. He was sacked twice. Cody Wells also saw action and was 2-of-5 for six yards with an interception.
Jyruss Edwards led ULM with 49 yards rushing, while Luke Russell added 20 yards on 11 carries and Centarius Donald had 15 yards on seven attempts.
ULM won the coin toss and deferred its decision until the second half.
Four drives into the game, the Warhawks earned the game's first first down. Two plays later, Brooks stepped in front of Brownings' pass and returned the interception 32 yards for a touchdown.
LSU's first defensive score of the season put the Tigers in front, 7-0, with 7:05 left in the first quarter.
ULM went three-and-out, quickly giving the Tigers offense a chance to get back on the field. A 13-yard pass from Lee to Toliver setup a career-long 53-yard field goal by Jasper that pushed the lead to 10-0 with 4:26 left.
A holding penalty stalled ULM's ensuing drive, and a short punt out of bounds gave the Tigers a short field at the ULM 47.
Ridley earned a first down on the ground but two passes by Lee fell incomplete and the Tigers again used the right foot of Jasper to add to the lead. A 45-yard field goal gave LSU a 13-0 lead with 1:27 left in the first quarter.
On the final play of the quarter, Browning took a shot deep into the LSU secondary. Peterson not only covered the intended receiver down the field, but the All-America candidate put himself in position to win the jump ball. Tip-toeing the sideline, Peterson stayed inbounds before marking 85 yards to the ULM 12. The return tied the third-longest in school history.
Six plays later, Ridley scored his eighth rushing touchdown of the season from 1 yard, and the Tigers led 20-0 with 12:28 left in the half.
ULM's first sustained drive of the game came down to a fourth-and-3 at the LSU 28, but Brooks and Sheppard stuffed receiver Tavarese Maye a yard short of the first down.
On the first play of the Warhawks next drive, Sheppard stripped the ball from Russell and LSU defensive tackle Lazarius Levingston recovered at the ULM 25.
On third-and-8 from the 11, Lee scrambled out of the pocket to his left and threw across his body to Toliver in the back of the endzone. The pass bounced off Toliver's hands and LSU took 23-0 lead into the half with a 29-yard field goal by Jasper.
In the second half, LSU linebacker Stefoin Francois' 10-yard sack of Browning forced ULM to punt on the opening series.
With Jefferson under center, completions of 14 yards to Russell Shepard and 23 yards to Toliver moved LSU to the 7-yard line. On first-and-goal, Ridley rumbled into the endzone for the second time to give LSU a 30-0 lead with 10:20 left in the third quarter.
ULM gave LSU another touchdown on its next offensive play, as Donald was stripped of the ball by Sheppard and Edwards picked up the loose ball for a 29-yard touchdown.
The second defensive score of the game gave LSU a 37-0 lead with 10:05 left in the third quarter.
LSU began its next drive with a short field when Aaron Munoz 31-yard punt was returned four yards to midfield by Alfred Blue. A 17-yard run by Ford and a pass interference call on ULM gave LSU a first down at the 18. Wide receiver James Wright caught a 13-yard pass from Lee before Ware ran for first first touchdown as a Tiger from 5 yards.
LSU led 44-0 with 3:33 left in the quarter.
Loston's interception setup the Tigers' final touchdown drive, a 10-play, 66-yard drive that ended with Ford's 17-yard score.
The attendance was 92,518.