Sal Colin pulled the strings for an Acadiana offense that powered the Rams to the semifinals of the state playoffs.
The attacking midfielder played at the tip of a midfield triangle, operating as the creative hub for Acadiana and feeding the team’s talented strikers.
Colin’s first touch and range of passing made him stand out in a talented district, and he was consistently the best player on the field during the Rams’ playoff run.
Acadiana coach Jan Richard said the Rams filtered everything they did offensively through Colin, and the midfielder’s talent allowed other players to shine.
“We wanted him touching the ball more than anyone else on the field, and he usually had the most touches for us,” Richard said. “You always want someone in the middle who is calm cool and collected.”
Richard said Colin, The Acadiana Advocate’s Outstanding Player for 2015, has been pivotal for the Rams since he joined the team, and he always had a team-first attitude.
“He was 100 (percent) dedication, hard work and heart. Technically he is as good as it gets but gave full effort,” Richard said. “He’s been a leader since he stepped on the field as a freshman. He relished the role.”
Coach of the Year
Jan Richard, Acadiana
The relationship Richard forged with his players has made the Rams perennial championship contenders in Division I.
Richard coached several of the Rams starters during their club season and his players rallied around him during adversity.
The bond showed after the Rams’ loss to Jesuit in the state semifinals, when Richard and his players sat with each other for several minutes afterward in shock.
Colin said the trust between Richard and the players allowed them to play more effectively on the field, with the players confident they could go to Richard with tactical suggestions and he would heed their advice.
SAL COLIN, Acadiana
KADE KLING, Acadiana
Kling played primarily on the right wing for the Rams, with Richard’s system allowing Kling to cut in on his preferred right foot to deadly effect.
PEYTON MARTER, STM
As a senior, Marter helped lead the Cougars to the No. 9 seed in the District II playoffs, despite the Cougars being hit hard by injuries early in the season.
SETH BROUSSARD, ESA
Broussard was named Division III-4’s offensive MVP after a successful senior season saw him lead Episcopal to the No. 6 seed in the playoffs, where they reached the quarterfinals before being defeated by state runner-up Northlake Christian.
BRANDON EMFINGER, Comeaux
Emfinger played several roles for a young Comeaux squad, with his versatility between offense and defense helping the Spartans to a successful season.
JEAN PAUL JUDICE, Lafayette
Judice played holding midfielder for Lafayette this season despite being a forward by trade, and his ability to transition between the positions helped Lafayette win a district title despite the Lions playing in the same district as Acadiana.
JUAN CARLOS PILICITA BRITO, Beau Chene
Brito was the offensive engine that made Beau Chene’s explosive offense run, as the Blue Gators earned the No. 1 overall seed in the Division II playoffs.
DYLAN CASTANEDA, Acadiana
Castaneda formed a partnership with Alex Caswell at the heart of a lockdown Acadiana defense. Castaneda’s speed and strength made him difficult to beat off the dribble or in aerial battles and his hard tackling made him a force to be reckoned with.
ALEX CASWELL, Acadiana
Caswell was a more offensive-minded version of Castaneda, with the freedom to go forward and start the attack after winning the ball.
MICHAEL FLUERANT, Lafayette
Fluerant formed the heart of Lafayette High’s defense and combined with Lions goalkeeper Michael Sellers as the two shut down opposing offenses.
BRILEY DRONET, Beau Chene
Dronet manned the net for the Blue Gators and was named Division II-4 defensive player of the year.
GAVEN STELLY, Beau Chene
Stelly teamed with Dronet to form a stout Beau Chene defense and was named to Division II-4’s all-district team.
JOSH DAKIN, ESA
Dakin was named Division III-4’s defensive MVP and along with Broussard was the key reason to Episcopal’s successful season.
MATTHEW SELLERS, Lafayette
Sellers was the goalie behind one of Division I’s most effective defensive outfits, and the senior’s mental toughness in the net coupled with his shot-stopping ability made him one of the best goalkeepers in the state.
SETH SONNIER, Teurlings
Sonnier led a young Teurlings team to the No. 15 seed in the Division II playoffs, where they reached the regional round, with Sonnier being named to the Division II all-state second team for his efforts.