Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- Ascension Catholic head coach Drey Trosclair speaks with quarterback Daniel Mattingly (12) on the sidelines against Southern Lab, Thursday, September 24, 2015, at the fairgrounds in Donaldsonville, La.

Those black T-shirts with “TOTT” on them have probably elicited some confused looks from opponents and fans, but they suit the Ascension Catholic football team just fine.

The Bulldogs get it and they get to take the next step Thursday in their quest for the ultimate goal — a berth in the Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA title game. Sixth-seeded ACHS (8-2) hosts No. 11 Houma Christian (6-3) for a Division IV first-round playoff game at Donaldsonville’s Boutte Stadium.

Baker (3-7), a No. 32 seed, travels to top-seeded Sterlington (10-0) for a Class 3A first-round game. Both start at 7 p.m.

“TOTT stands for ‘Toes On The Turf,’ which represents our goal — to have our toes on the turf of the (Mercedes-Benz) Superdome for the last game of the year,” ACHS coach Drey Trosclair said. “I believe this group is exactly where we expected them to be. They came into the season with the potential to be a very good team. They’ve maximized that potential, but there is more to do.”

Ascension Catholic seeks its first berth in an LHSAA football title game since winning a Class 1A title in 1992. Trosclair said the Bulldogs won’t change what they do or take anything or any team for granted.

ACHS and Houma Christian have one common opponent in Convenant Christian. The Bulldogs beat CCA 47-0, while Houma Christian lost to their Houma rival 35-6.

The strength of the ACHS offense is its running game, led by Jai Williams and Jamar Barber, who also are starters on defense. The duo rotates in the backfield and has combined for 2,200 yards and 29 TDs. Also a linebacker, Williams leads the defense in tackles. 

“What we have to do is execute,” Trosclair said. “Houma Christian is a team that tries to confuse you with a lot of formations. They run trick plays. We have to play smart and handle our assignments. There are no second chances now.”

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