Crowley football coach Josh Fontenot’s already dreading life next season without senior quarterback Pate Broussard.
Fontenot got a taste of it a week ago, albeit for a half and was pleased with the results.
Crowley overcame the loss of Broussard to a first-half shoulder injury and relied on running back Ty’Von Griffin’s 255 yards rushing and five TDs in a 41-35 road victory over Livonia.
With Broussard’s status expected to be resolved before game time, No. 2 Crowley (12-0) goes into its Class 4A nonselect state quarterfinal against No. 10 Franklinton (9-3) with the possibility of sophomore Paul Dugar running the team’s offense. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. Friday at Gardiner Memorial Stadium
“We’re still holding out hope,” Fontenot said. “We think he could play but at what capacity? We don’t know.”
No. 9 Kaplan (9-3) returns home to Ed Douglass Memorial Stadium after an impressive 22-7 victory over Winnfield to face No. 1 Lutcher (11-1), while No. 7 Northwest (10-2) visits No. 15 St. James (9-3) in a pair of Class 3A state quarterfinals.
“It’s just hard to simulate them, especially the speed factor,” Kaplan coach Stephen “Tank” Lotief said. “We don’t have anyone that can throw it like this guy (Jontre Kirklin). We don’t have anyone that can run like him either. Hopefully it’s hard for them to simulate us as well.”
FRANKLINTON AT CROWLEY: Crowley, which is 12-0 for the first time, is appearing in its first quarterfinal in 17 years.
Broussard, who has passed for 2,670 yards and 21 TDs, has played a significant part in the Gents’ run to the District 3-4A championship and beyond.
Dugar stepped in for Broussard and help to rally Crowley from a 21-14 halftime deficit with 27 second-half points, including a 13-yard TD pass to John Marceaux.
Griffin’s performance increased his season’s total to 213 carries for 1,498 yards and 33 TDs.
“We passed that test and now we get to come home and play in the quarterfinals,” Fontenot said. “We’ll have an enormous crowd. You have to put that aside and focus on what we need to do. We’ve been good about that this year.”
LUTCHER AT KAPLAN: Talk about your contrasting styles, Lutcher’s up-tempo style on offense versus Kaplan’s grind-it-out Wing-T offense that prefers time-consuming drives.
Lutcher, which has won nine straight, relies on the run-throw capabilities of Kirklin, who leads an offense averaging 41.3 points.
Kirklin has passed for 1,820 yards with 30 TDs and rushed for another 732 yards and scored 12 times. Al’Dontre Davis leads the Bulldogs with 51 catches for 723 yards and 12 TDs.
Fullback Julius Johnson paces Kaplan with 332 carries for 2,006 yards and 22 TDs followed by quarterback Jade Herpin (56-372, four TDs) and running back Mac Thibeaux (45-300, 2 TDs).
“We’re going to have to do what we do,” said Lotief, whose team has won seven straight. “They do everything so well. They run it and throw it so well.