The New Orleans Advocate’s all-metro football team is about a week away from its unveiling.
But before we officially bring to a close the 2014 high school football season, here is a look back at some of the highlights and lowlights of the season.
B est regular-season game : Let’s go back to Week 2 of the regular season when Rummel made the trip to Hahnville.
The game took three overtimes to settle before the Raiders outlasted the Tigers 37-31.
Looking for a runner-up for best game?
How about Hahnville again one week later, when the Tigers traveled to Behrman Stadium to play Landry-Walker?
This one also needed overtime (again three), but Hahnville won this time, surviving 45-39.
Best postseason game: It would be hard to pick against the Division I state championship game between Jesuit and John Curtis. The crowd alone made this one special, and one that will be talked about for years to come.
Biggest surprise: You can make a strong case for Brother Martin, which started the season 8-0 and turned the Catholic League race into a three-man race.
But how about a nod to De La Salle, which had one of the school’s best records in recent history.
Biggest surprise off the field: Executive Director Kenny Henderson and the LHSAA deciding to part ways.
Biggest upset: Bonnabel’s 21-14 overtime win over East Jefferson.
Weirdest ending: Houma Christian’s win against Country Day in the regular-season finale for both. There are no lights at Country Day, so the game started at 3 p.m. It was getting dark by the time Houma Christian’s Sam Troslair’s field goal sailed through the uprights as time expired in regulation to break a tie. It was almost too dark to tell if the kick was good, so we’ll take the referee’s word for it. If Trosclair had missed, I’m not sure what the plan would’ve been because it was too dark to continue.
Speaking of darkness, who can forget the night the lights went out at Tad Gormley Stadium as Curtis and St. Augustine played?
We should have known that was a sign that would lead to the year’s most suprising ending: St. Augustine beating John Curtis … on a field goal.
The Purple Knights won the game on a field goal, the first time coach Cyril Crutchfield has even attempted a field goal in his coaching career. Crutchfield improved to 2-0 all-time against legendary coach J.T. Curtis. (I doubt if there’s another coach in the world who can say that).
But it wasn’t enough. Crutchfield ended up being one of the coaches in the area having to find a job this offseason. Crutchfield, Phil Banko (East St. John), and Stuart Bott (Grace King) are all being replaced this season. Bott, by the way, won four games, which is almost equivalent to a state championship at Grace King.
Worst ending: Miller-McCoy’s game against Landry-Walker, which ended with a brawl right at the half, causing the game to be ended. Miller-McCoy had to forfeit its next game as well, but the Lions rebounded and went on to win the district championship.
Best turnaround: Mandeville. The Skippers didn’t score a point the first two weeks of the season and lost three of their next four games. But then they got going, reeling off eight straight victories and reaching the quarterfinals of the Class 5A playoffs.
Best team: That’s easy. Jesuit. Blue Jays ended a 54-year title drought and finished No. 1 in The New Orleans Advocate’s Super 10. The Blue Jays were the only local team to claim a state championship this season. Talk about setting the bar high in your first year, Mark Songy.
T he ones we missed : Hannan was ranked No. 9 in the pre-season Small School Super 10 after reaching the Division III championship game a season ago. They finished the season 1-9.
East St. John started the season ranked No. 4 in the Large School rankings and finished 6-6. (In their defense, the schedule was pretty brutal with Rummel, Curtis and two dates with Destrehan).
Best play: I’m going with Warren Easton receiver Tyron Johnson hurdling a defender in the Superdome on Saturday in the Class 4A title game.
Thanks, Tyron, for that memory.
Thanks, 2014, for all the other memories.