There’s been a certain buzz around the Pointe Coupee Central campus in LaBarre this week. There will even be a pep rally Friday morning to commemorate the football team’s game later that evening.
It’s not every day PCC plays in a state playoff game much less host one. In fact, for the first time in the 23-year existence of the school, that’s the exact position the No. 8 Cougars (7-2) find themselves in when they entertain No. 25 Montgomery (6-4) in a Class 1A first-round game at 7 p.m. today.
“The kids on campus are talking about us,” PCC coach Lawrence Brown said. “The pep rally is going to be exciting. We’re a small school, but we manage to try and have fun as best we can.”
The PCC-Montgomery matchup represents one of 19 games Friday in Classes 3A-1A in the Baton Rouge area.
Top-seeded Parkview Baptist (8-0) is the area’s lone No. 1 seed and hosts No. 32 Erath (5-5) in Class 3A competition, while No. 3 University (9-1) takes on No. 30 Jonesboro-Hodge (4-6) at Jeff Boss Field and No. 29 Northeast (4-5) travels to No. 4 Springfield (8-1) and No. 24 Booker T. Washington-Shreveport (5-5) visits No. 9 Episcopal (7-3) in Class 2A teams at home.
No. 9 Southern Lab (8-2) will be at Southern’s Mumford Stadium against No. 24 Catholic-Pointe Coupee (6-4) and No. 22 Archbishop Hannan travels to No. 11 White Castle (8-2) in Class 1A home games of interest.
Brown, who has been at PCC for four years and three as head coach, guided the Cougars to a 6-5 record and trip to the playoffs a year ago, losing 26-0 at Block-Jonesville.
Since losing back-to-back games to open the year PCC has reeled off seven consecutive victories and captured the District 6-1A title.
Quarterback Kevin Bourgeois ranks 12th statewide in passing, having completed 105 of 229 passes for 2,203 yards and 22 TDs. David St. Cyr (42 receptions, 1,053 yards, 12 TDs) is his chief target.
“I want the community to come out and see the kids,” Brown said. “If they get behind us with a little a push, there’s no telling what we might do. That’s a big deal to me.”
Speaking of streaks U-High has rattled off seven straight victories since a 26-21 home loss to Loranger.
The Cubs are also back in the playoffs after making a quarterfinal run that ended with a 23-20 loss at Calvary Baptist of Shreveport.
Sophomore running back Nicholas Brossette (162 carries 1,295 yards, 30 TDs) is part of a diverse offense that generates 43 points.
“It’s still a new team, a new group going through those experiences,” U-High coach Chad Mahaffey said. “But I think from a program standpoint it’s a bunch of kids that have been there and hopefully those things will pay off.”
Brusly coach Erik Willis has been a part of a playoff rematch one other time in his career and enjoyed the results of both games.
He’s optimistic of a similar occurrence when No. 16 Brusly (8-2) hosts No. 17 E.D. White (6-4) in a battle of District 7-3A foes. The Panthers, who are in search of the program’s first playoff win since 2004, soundly defeated the Cardinals 43-7 in Thibodaux just more than a month ago.
“In all three phases of the game, it was one of our best games,” Willis said. “Especially against the opponent we played. I would say it was our best performance.”
With senior quarterback Jay Christophe leading the way — 1,203 passing yards and 19 TDs to go along with 1,036 rushing yards and 13 TDs — Brusly has won four of its past five games and secured the league’s runners-up position behind St. Charles, which had to rally for an 18-14 win over E.D. White a week ago.
“We’ve talked about how E.D. White’s definitely gotten better,” Willis said. “If you can get in four good practices, then that’s all you can do. That means the kids are focused and not thinking we’ve already beaten them last time. We’re not practicing like we’re complacent.
“We’re practicing like we’re hungry, so we feel pretty good.”