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Football: Lambert can't repeat previous success in loss to Collins Hill
Lambert defensive back Jake Rising attempts to break up a Collins Hill pass Friday, Sept. 1, 2017. (Photo by Kevin O'Brien)

SUWANEE – Collins Hill avenged last season’s loss to Lambert with a 24-6 win on Friday night.

On Sept. 2, 2016, almost exactly one year to the date, Lambert (0-2) beat Collins Hill (2-1) 26-16 at home to move to 1-1 on the season, but this game was a much different story.

Lambert opened the game with a nine-play, 43-yard drive that ended with a 21-yard field goal from Bryce Christensen. Christensen’s two field goals were the only points the Longhorns scored in the game.

With the exception of a few big runs, Lambert struggled to get anything going offensively. The Longhorns had 29 carries for 206 yards on the ground, but 163 of those yards came on five separate carries. Lambert quarterback Bobby Gabriel led the Longhorns with 86 yards on six carries, while Justin Bruno picked up 60 yards on 10 carries.

“Offensively, I saw a lot of real good things, but we just didn’t finish drives,” Lambert head coach Louis Daniel said “You’d see a big play here, big play there, we were in the red zone a handful of times. If you put some points on the board in those situations and you come away with a different dynamic in the game, and we didn’t.”

The passing game was virtually non-existent. Gabriel completed 2-of-13 pass attempts for 12 yards and two interceptions. And one of those interceptions was taken 57 yards for a Collins Hill touchdown by Peyton Woulard. The Wake Forest commit had two interceptions in the game.

“We just gotta keep working,” Daniel said. “It’s a fundamental football game. I don’t know that there’s any secret to the passing game, the running game, it’s a game of fundamentals. We have to be a little more crisp on our routes, we’ve got to do a better job of picking people up, and there was some catchable balls tonight that we didn’t come down with. Bobby [Gabriel] played hard, he always competes.”

Lambert quarterback Bobby Gabriel tries to elude Collins Hill's D'Ante Carr on Friday, Sept. 1, 2017. /// Photo by Kevin O'Brien
The Longhorns played the Eagles close in the first half, trailing 10-3 at the end of two. But Collins Hill demoralized them in the second half. On their opening drive of the third quarter, the Eagles went on a 14-play, 78-yard touchdown drive to go up 17-3 with 5:50 remaining in the third. Then three plays later, Woulard broke the game wide open with his pick-six.

Collins Hill outgained Lambert 334-218 for the game, but they kept the Longhorns one-dimensional by limiting them to just 12 yards passing.

“Coach (Lenny) Gregory does a great job,” Daniel said. “He’s a Wing-T guy and runs some spread stuff. They did a good job of mixing that stuff up.”

Lambert is still looking for their first win of the season, and they will travel to Canton next week to face Cherokee.

“We’ve got a lot to work on, obviously, going 0-2, but that’s not going to stop us,” Bruno said. “We’re still going to come at it like it’s the beginning of the season.”