Kelly Orgeron’s twin boys had only seen her cry twice in her life.
Once when her mother died on Christmas Day three years ago, and again when her father-in-law passed away.
The third time came Friday night during pregame activities as Mandeville celebrated Senior Night.
“This has been a special year,” she said.
The 2015 season is the first time her twin sons (quarterback Cody and receiver Parker) had played together since sixth grade.
This night took her on an emotional roller coaster, with ups, downs, ups and then one last trip down.
Final: St. Paul’s 7, Mandeville 0. Or, as Cody may have read the scoreboard: 7- love.
Cody was a tennis star at Mandeville, winning a doubles state title as a freshman and a singles title as a sophomore, before returning to football this season to toss passes to his brother.
“It’s been a blessing having him back out here with me,” said Parker, older by just 1 minute. “We have some good chemistry. I have been trying to recruit him out here since his freshman year.”
Parker’s dreams finally came true, thanks to Cody’s dreams.
“Believe it or not, I had a dream nine nights in a row,” Cody said. “God told me I needed to come out and play, and I’m a firm believer in Christ. I thought He was telling me something, and I felt I needed to listen. It’s been the best decision of my life.”
Cody called it the best decision of his life moments after coming up just a tad bit short.
He drove the Skippers to the 13-yard line with several clutch throws, including a huge third-down pass to Aaron Thompson.
But he was sacked and fumbled with 1:19 left, sealing Mandeville’s fate.
“It’s been the best year of my life by far, despite this tough loss,” Cody said. “We are going to keep fighting. There have been some tennis matches that have been some dogfights. Like my dad always tell me, ‘Never quit and keep your head up, no matter what happens. The sun is going to come up tomorrow.’ ”
Cody and Parker’s dad, LSU defensive line coach Ed Orgeron, was on a recruiting trip and had to miss Senior Night. He wouldn’t have liked the final score, but he probably would enjoyed his boys’ efforts.
Cody, who came in having thrown for 1,216 yards and 14 touchdowns, completed 14 of 18 passes for 142 yards. Parker, who had 47 catches for 730 yards and 13 touchdowns, caught three passes for 23 yards and rushed a season-high 11 times for 66 yards.
Coach O would’ve been just as proud of Kelly’s hustle. During pregame introductions, she wore a No. 2 jersey when Cody was introduced. She then had to rush back to the sideline and switch to a No. 10 jersey in the nick of time for Parker’s introduction. She then switched to a black jacket to pose for a picture with both.
She isn’t the only one who was glad to finally have both on the field.
“It would have been nice to have him for four years,” Mandeville coach Guy Lecompte said. “I put a lot on him in one year, and he has picked it all up. I am impressed with his knowledge of the game. He really works hard.”
Cody was optimistic about the rest of the season and said the Skippers will “keep fighting.”
“I’m not hanging my head,” he said.
Neither was his mom after the roller-coaster ride of a night in this thrilling north shore battle.
“This one hurts you in your heart,” she said. “This is one of those games you’ll never forget.”