There’s no shortage of perspective when it comes to Ascension Episcopal’s pursuit of perfection.
The only thing coach Mike Desormeaux had to do when it came to explaining the degree of difficulty surrounding his team’s chase of a perfect regular season was to draw from the experience of veteran assistant Scott McCullough, a former longtime offensive coordinator at Acadiana High.
“He’s been doing it for 34 years and he’s had one team go 10-0,” Desormeaux said. “It’s a very special thing that happens. I told them (team) none of us may ever experience this again, so we need to make sure we finish this thing right with no blemishes.”
No. 2 Ascension Episcopal (9-0, 6-0) looks to complete its first undefeated regular season, close out the District 7-1A title and likely wrap up a No. 1 seed for the Division IV select playoffs in its game against No. 7 Central Catholic-Morgan City (8-1, 5-1) at 7 p.m. Friday.
“We talked about it at the beginning of the year where in Week 10 we were playing for a district championship,” Desormeaux said. “We wanted it to mean something, and here we are, it’s something the kids have worked hard for. You’re happy their goals are in still intact.”
No. 5 Eunice (8-1, 4-0) travels to Pine Prairie (3-6, 0-4) with an opportunity to win the District 5-3A championship outright and claim Class 3A’s top seed in the nonselect playoffs.
“At worst we’ll finish second (in power ratings) if Lutcher wins,” said Eunice coach PaulTrosclair, whose program last won a district title in 2012. “Everybody wants to get the best bracket they can, and we know we would have a home game the first round. That’s all part of our motivation and to finish district undefeated.”
Central Catholic, which has rebounded with a pair of wins since a 48-30 loss to Vermilion Catholic, also has plenty riding.
The Eagles can force a potential three-way share of the league title, along with Vermilion Catholic and help their power rating for next week’s Division IV select playoffs.
“That type of competition does nothing but prepare you for the playoffs and makes you better,” Central Catholic coach Tommy Minton said. “It’s the true essence of the sport, and that’s to line up and compete every week and see who comes out on top.”
Central Catholic features the state’s third-leading rusher in senior Stefano Guarisco with 219 carries for 1,994 yards and 32 TDs. He’s accounted for six more TDs and leads the state in scoring with 282 points.
Central Catholic quarterback Blake Byrne has completed 39 of 71 passes for 804 yards and 10 TDs.
AES quarterback and UL-Lafayette commitment Jake Arceneaux is coming off a 200-yard performance in last week’s 35-7 win over Lafayette Christian, bringing his totals to 1,696 yards passing and 21 TDs.
Ja’Ciery Linzer has returned to full strength with 95 carries for 850 yards and 14 TDs, while Ronald Leblanc (34-698, 10 TDs) and Zack Ronquillo (31-437, five TDs) serve as Arceneaux’s top targets.
Andre Roth (61 tackles, six tackles for loss) and Peyton Adams (48 tackles, 3 TFLs, fumble recovery) are the Gators top two tacklers.
“You’ve got to feel like with the games we’ve been in and the experiences we’ve had, you’ve got to feel and believe they’ve prepared us to win,” Desormeaux said. “I think our kids will be ready to go and play well. There’s no doubt it’s going to be a heck of a game.”