Acadiana girls soccer team beats rival Lafayette _lowres

Advocate Photo by BRAD KEMP Acadiana's Monique Hundley, left, and Lafayette's Caroline Mitchel battle on Jan. 26. Acadiana and Lafayette both qualified for the Divisions I playoffs, with Acadiana seeded 10th and Lafayette No. 18.

St. Thomas More, Teurlings Catholic and Acadiana highlight a deep field of local teams who advanced to postseason play when the LHSAA’s girls soccer brackets were announced Tuesday afternoon.

Acadiana received the No. 10 seed in Division I, matching up with New Orleans-area team Chapelle in the bidistrict round.

Rams coach John Carriere said he was disappointed in his team’s seeding and lamented the matchups they faced going forward but was looking forward to his team’s home game against Chapelle.

Acadiana will play Chapelle at 6 p.m. Thursday.

The Rams would face either No. 7 Fontainebleau or Hahnville in the regional round with a potential matchup against either district rival No. 18 Lafayette or No. 2 St. Scholastica looming in the quarterfinals.

Carriere said Fontainebleau has defeated his team twice this season, and he wasn’t looking forward to the prospect of playing SSA in the later rounds.

“(Fontainebleau) is tough and physical, so it’s going to take a tremendous effort for us to beat them if we get that far,” Carriere said.

Lafayette coach Katie Breaux said her team would have to dig itself out of being the No. 18 seed and run the gauntlet of tough opponents in their way.

“You have to beat everyone at some point if you want to win it all,” Breaux said.

Breaux said her team’s difficult schedule, featuring some of the state’s top teams, has Lafayette ready for the competition it will see in the playoffs.

Lafayette will play at 6 p.m. Friday at East Ascension.

No. 13 Comeaux and No. 25 Carencro also advanced to the postseason and will play No. 20 Thibodaux and No. 8 Byrd.

Carencro coach Michael Woodall said his team seemed to peaking at the right time and was proud of his girls for advancing to the next stage.

“Carencro hasn’t made the playoffs since 2008, so this is a tremendous achievement for our players,” Woodall said.

St. Thomas More (20-2-2 overall, 6-0 district) received the second overall seed in Division II, matching up with No. 31 Pearl River. The Cougars have excelled this season under first-year coach Daniel Underwood.

Underwood said the Cougars were playing well earlier in the season, but recent matchups against Mandeville and SSA have exposed some flaws they hope to correct in the playoffs.

“You always want your teams to peak at the right time, and I’m just hoping we can get it going again late in the season,” Underwood said.

Pearl River has been ranked as high as No. 18 in the LHSAA Power Rankings only being pegged down to No. 31 because of their schedule, and Underwood said he wasn’t expecting a typical early round opponent.

Underwood said he hasn’t seen Pearl River play, and the only common opponent the team’s have played is Lakeshore, so he wasn’t sure what to expect when the Cougars take on Pearl River at 5:30 p.m. Friday.

“We’ve done some scouting on some of the other top teams, but we don’t really have much in the early rounds,” Underwood said. “Hopefully we’re lucky enough to advance and use some of those notes.”

The Cougars won the Division II, District 4 title despite heavy competition from district rival Teurlings Catholic with both games in district being close games.

Teurlings (13-6-3) received the No. 6 seed and will play Plaquemine in its first round game.

The Rebels have played most of the season without leading scorer Paige Robichaux, who suffered a knee injury and was ruled out for the season.

Peltier said while losing a player of Robichaux’s talent is always difficult, he sees his players adjusting to playing without their leading scorer.

The Rebels played rival St. Louis in “tune-up” game for the playoffs, and Peltier said he was encouraged by the way the Rebels finished the season.

Teurlings will play on its home field at 6 p.m. Thursday.

Rounding out Division II, No. 24 Westgate will face No. 9 Neville, while No. 20 Opelousas takes on No. 13 West Ouachita.

Ascension Episcopal (No. 7) and Opelousas Catholic (No. 9) were placed on opposite sides of the Division III bracket, setting up potential matchups with the top two teams (No. 1 Northlake Christian and No. 2 University Lab) in the quarterfinals.

Ascension Episcopal plays No. 26 West Feliciana in the bidistrict round and will face either No. 10 Newman or No. 23 Christian Life in the regional round.

Opelousas Catholic faces No. 24 Erath before a potential matchup with either No. 8 Pope John Paul II or Ouachita Christian.

Both Catholic-New Iberia (No. 13) and Episcopal of Acadiana (No. 15) advanced to the playoffs and will take on No. 20 Runnels and No. 18 Riverside Academy.