This time a year ago, not many would have predicted the East Jefferson football team or the Mount Carmel girls basketball team would win state championships.
But both teams put together historic seasons and will be rewarded for their success on August 2 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome at the Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame Banquet.
The two teams are among seven winners selected by the Greater New Orleans Sports Awards Committee, sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl.
Also recognized will be one of the most decorated high school football players in New Orleans history (former St. Augustine running back Leonard Fournette) and one of the most sought after girls basketball recruits in the nation (Salmen’s Kalani Brown).
The East Jefferson football team was voted Outstanding Boys Team, while Mount Carmel was named Outstanding Girls Team.
East Jefferson won the Class 4A state championship, the first in school history, finishing 15-0 and No. 1 in The New Orleans Advocate’s large school Super 10.
Nick Saltaformaggio, who guided East Jefferson to the title in December before taking over at Hahnville, will be recognized as Boys Prep Coach of the Year.
Mount Carmel, won the Class 5A state title (the first in school history), and has been named Girls Prep Team of the Year. The Cubs won the title despite being a No. 9 seed and finished the season 26-6.
Fournette, now a freshman at LSU, will be honored as Outstanding Male Amateur athlete, after a highlight-filled season at St. Augustine.
Fournette finished the season with 1,793 yards on 194 carries, and 16 touchdowns, averaging 9.2 yards per carry. He also had 745 receiving yards and six TDs, and completed 21 of 32 passes for 322 yards and two touchdowns.
He was named Offensive Player of the Year on The New Orleans Advocate’s All-Metro Team for Large Schools after leading the Purple Knights to a 9-2 record, a Catholic League title, and the Division I semifinals.
Brown, who led Salmen to its second straight 4A title, is Outstanding Female Amateur.
She averaged 21 points, 14 rebounds and five blocked shots this season.
The Spartans finished as the No. 1-ranked team in The New Orleans Advocate season-ending Super 10, and ended with a 33-1 record and on a 27-game winning streak.
Ben Franklin soccer coach Jose Ferrand is the Outstanding Girls Prep Coach after guiding his school to a second straight state title. The school carries a 40-game winning streak into the season.
Louisiana-Lafayette baseball coach Tony Robichaux will be honored as the year’s Outstanding College Coach.
Fournette will also be recognized as winner of the Corbett Award, presented to the top male amateur athlete in the state. He is the first high school player to ever win the honor.
Curtis’ OL Allen honored
Willie Allen, an offensive lineman at John Curtis, was named to the MaxPreps Preseason Junior All-American Football Team for Juniors.
Allen was a first-team selection and was the only player from the New Orleans area to make the team which consisted of the nation’s best players in the Class of 2016.
He was one of three players from Louisiana to be selected.
Patterson receiver Mykel Jones and North Webster linebacker Devin White also made the first team.
Benton gets academic honor
Mandeville soccer player Hannah Benton was named to the 2013-14 National Soccer Coaches Association of America High School All-America Team.
Benton, who played defender for Mandeville, was the lone player from Louisiana to make the girls or boys team.
A total of 101 players were chosen for the team.
Nominations and voting were based on cumulative grade-point-average and honors through the first semester of their senior year, and playing accolades for their entire scholastic career.
All of the scholar All-Americans will be recognized and presented their award at the NSCAA High School All-America Brunch on Aug. 2 at Lake Buena Vista Palace in Orlando, Florida.
To submit items for the high school notebook, email Rod Walker at email@example.com.