Winning three of its past four regular season games doesn’t change the perception that Acadiana High appears to be stumbling its way into the postseason.
A loss to district foe Carencro in the penultimate game and a 42-13 victory over New Iberia where the Rams fumbled 10 times have created doubts to whether or not this Rams team is as good as those in years past.
Acadiana draws St. Amant in the first round, a streaking opponent entering the playoffs winners of its past three games. The Gators have senior leadership at quarterback in Tyler Dixon and a big, explosive weapon in sophomore receiver Briggs Bourgeois.
The Rams’ rushing attack, behind Eric Duhon and Malik Eugene, have had its share of success, but the 10 fumbles last week can’t bolster anyone’s confidence. The Rams play St. Amant at home, but should not overlook the Gators in their quest to repeat as state champion.
Carencro will host Convington, which is coming off an appearance in the state semifinals last season. The Bears are riding high, winners of four straight including the big win Halloween night against Acadiana.
The Bears’ passing tandem of Tyler Gaspard and Donald Stokes have created mismatches for defenses and opened up running lanes for running back Tyriek Campbell. Carencro’s defensive strong suit is its secondary, led by Gabriel Duffy.
That Bears defense will be challenged in the run defense as Covington brings in a strong duo of backs in Devin Brumfield and Josh Bickham. The pair of Lions combined for more than 1,800 yards and 20 touchdowns on the ground.
Carencro has already faced and beaten a dynamic duo of running backs in Acadiana’s Duhon and Eugene. If the Bears can play the same fundamental defense they played against Acadiana, they’ll have a good chance at stopping Covington.
Despite Teurlings beating St. Thomas More in the regular season, and ending the season on a nine-game winning streak, the Rebels drew the No. 7 seed while the Cougars received the No. 3 seed and the bye. The Rebels also drew a tough first-round opponent in the No. 10 seed Holy Cross.
Holy Cross will bring in highly recruited receiver Michael Chigbu. The 6-foot-2 Georgia commit will be the most explosive player the Teurlings defense has seen all season.
Teurlings has its share of offensive weapons led by junior quarterback Cole Kelley. Kelley had six touchdown passes last week against Northside, which gave the Rebels an undefeated district championship.
In that game, Sage LeBlanc had 12 catches for 155 yards and three touchdowns. LeBlanc uses his speed and presents matchup problems for defenses in the slot or in the backfield.
Teurlings needs to be careful to not look ahead to its potential second-round game against Rummel. Chigbu and the Tigers are no slouch opponent and Teurlings coach Sonny Charpentier’s ability to keep his team focused will be tested Friday night.