NEW IBERIA — Before the Westgate Tigers departed for Napoleonville for their second-round Class 4A playoff game at Assumption on Friday, the school held a pep rally to not only celebrate the team's success but to also honor senior receiver Kayshon Boutte.
An LSU commitment and the No. 1 prospect in Louisiana according to ESPN, Boutte became the first Westgate football player to achieve Under Armour All-American status when he was officially presented his All-American jersey after the pep rally.
"It's big," Boutte said. "It's something I've been waiting for all year."
After gaining notoriety as a freshman track star, Boutte found that he loves football just as much, if not more.
"What stood out to me the most during my career is when I was a freshman, I was mostly a track runner," he said. "I won state. Throughout my sophomore year, I got into a rhythm and found out that I really love football. I took it seriously, got better each day and got to where I'm at now."
As a senior, Boutte has 40 catches for 719 yards and 11 touchdowns. He's also rushed for 780 yards to lead his team to an 8-3 record and a No. 10 seed in the 4A bracket.
"Kayshon is a special talent, a special kid," said Westgate coach Ryan Antoine, whose team can reach the quarterfinals for the first time in his tenure with a win versus Assumption. "When he came into the program four years ago, we sat down with his parents. We had a dream and a vision of what he could become.
"It's phenomenal for him to go out there and surpass all those dreams. It's special, and it's good for us as a program. It shows where we're at as a program and the type of recognition we've been able to get for our kids. I'm excited for him and the school."
Antoine said his star player has a competitive edge.
"Kayshon is just the ultimate competitor," the Westgate coach said. "I've never been around a kid who competes so hard in every little thing. It's a race to get to practice, to the weight room. ... He competes everywhere with everything he does, and it's always at 100%. That's what's gotten him to where he is.
"The crazy part about him is that he's only 17 years old. I think he's just scratching the surface of how good he can be. It's enjoyable seeing the accolades he's receiving. The disheartening part is knowing that he won't be with us next year. He ranks among the top players if not the best player to ever come through New Iberia."
Boutte hasn't announced when he'll sign a letter of intent, but he's looking forward to suiting up with fellow LSU commitments Rakim Jarrett, a five-star receiver from the Washington D.C. area, and blue-chip Madison Prep defensive back Major Burns in the All-American game.
Before that happens, however, he has unfinished business as a Westgate Tiger.
"I feel good about the season," Boutte said. "It's the best we've done in a while. We're trying to make a run and hopefully win state. We have to move the ball, and the defense has to play well against Assumption because they have a high-powered offense, too."
The Under Armour All-American game will take place in Orlando, Florida, on January 2, 2020.