Much has been said and written about University High’s 13-0 run to the LHSAA’s Division II title. Whether or not the Cubs were Louisiana’s top team in all classes in 2017 is a debatable.
But for UHS coach Chad Mahaffey, it was about the journey and how his team approached it. That journey has netted Coach of the Year honors for Mahaffey on the Louisiana Sports Writers Association’s Class 3A All-State team.
“I think every day the goal is to strive for perfection, whether you’re practicing or playing a game, and it is not ever going to be perfect,” Mahaffey said. “The thing I’m proudest of is the way this team worked toward that every day as a group.
“This is a huge honor, and there are a lot of great coaches out there. I appreciate it, but I would be remiss to not give credit to Andy Martin and our defensive coaches because that was the part of our game that was so consistent and to our players for the way they bought into what we do.”
The Cubs won their second Division II title in four seasons, beating three other teams that won LHSAA titles along the way. Mahaffey shares top honors with quarterback Julien Gums of De La Salle and Sterlington linebacker Dawson Snell.
Gums was voted the Offensive Most Valuable Player after leading the Cavaliers to a Division II runner-up finish to U-High. He had 1,200 yards passing and 13 touchdowns, along with 1,190 yards rushing and 15 TDs. Snell led top-seeded Sterlington to the 3A quarterfinals with 135 tackles, three sacks and three interceptions.
Not to be lost in the shuffle of honors was the Class 3A/Division II sweep of titles by U-High and West Feliciana, which claimed the 3A crown, its first in school history.
The Saints placed four players on the team: offensive tackle Jakob Fudge, defensive tackle Zakk McKeehan (53 tackles, 21 tackles for loss), return specialist Davon Harris and athlete Derek Turner. U-High is represented by running back Michael Hollins and linebacker Bryton Constantin.
Harris had more than 717 return yards and two TDs for a 34.1-yard average. Turner finished with 1,396 yards passing and 19 TDs and 1,060 yards rushing and 16 TDs. He also had 54 tackles as a defensive back.
Hollins finished with with 1,571 yards rushing on 186 carries and 34 TDs. Constantin had 94 tackles and six sacks.
Baker wide receiver Claude Coleman (57 catches, 1,024 yards, nine TDs) and two players from St. James, defensive lineman Jason Dumas (48 tackles, 22 tackles for loss) and linebacker Shawn Preston (56 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, three forced fumbles, two interceptions) are other area players on the team.
CLASS 3A ALL-STATE FOOTBALL CHART
Position Name School Ht. Wt. Class
WR Geor’Quarius Spivey Richwood 6-6 225 Sr.
WR Kenan Jones Berwick 6-3 210 Sr.
WR Claude Coleman Baker 6-3 175 Sr.
OL Whit Buffington Sterlington 5-8 254 Sr.
OL Jakob Fudge West Feliciana 6-2 270 Sr.
OL Christian Hoz Archbishop Hannan 6-5 302 Sr.
OL Robert McDonald St. Charles Catholic
OL Jeremiah James De La Salle 6-1 285 Sr.
QB Julien Gums De La Salle 5-11 220 Sr.
RB Eric London Caldwell 5-8 194 Sr.
RB Michael Hollins University 5-10 200 Jr.
RB Kaleb Guillory Iota 5-7 187 Sr.
PK Adam Ieyoub St. Louis Catholic
ATH Derek Turner West Feliciana 5-11 185 Sr.
Position Name School Ht. Wt. Class
DL Javiar Wade Richwood 6-3 230 Sr.
DL Jamiran James De La Salle 6-2 275 Sr.
DL Jason Dumas St. James 6-2 260 Sr.
DL Zakk McKeehan West Feliciana 6-4 290 Sr.
LB Dawson Snell Sterlington 5-10 195 Sr.
LB Deione Reed Richwood 5-9 220 Sr.
LB Bryton Constantin University 6-2 225 Jr.
LB Shawn Preston St. James 6-1 200 Sr.
DB Benny Davis Richwood 5-10 171 Jr.
DB Darius Daniels Iowa 6-0 190 Sr.
DB Lance Robinson De La Salle 5-11 180 Sr.
DB Shaun Todd Jena 5-10 175 Jr.
P Luke Colona Loranger 6-3 180 Sr.
KR Davon Harris West Feliciana 5-6 180 Sr.
OFFENSIVE MOST VALUABLE PLAYER: JULIEN GUMS, DE LA SALLE
DEFENSIVE MOST VALUABLE PLAYER: DAWSON SNELL, STERLINGTON
Honorable mention: Barrett Hover, Berwick; DeAndre Diggs, Patterson; DeAndre Brown, Brusly; Glenn Brown, St. James; Seth Caillouet, Hannan; Cedric Williams, KIPP; Tamir Bryant Lusher; Aaron Granier, KIPP; Chris Rabensteiner, Hannan; Kendall Collins, De La Salle; Brendan David, Hannan; Carter Georges, Hannan; Mason Narcisse, St. Charles; Ari Broussard, Lusher; Jordan Jensen, St. Charles; Gavin St. Pierre, St. Charles; Cameron O’Brien, Hannan; Brooks Rushworth, Sterlington; Markai’il Nixon, Iowa; Thomas Miles, Peabody; Josh Carver, Berwick; Christian Harris, University; Tanner Armstrong, Loranger; Isaac Ellis, Carroll; Casey Spicer, Jena; Jarvis Taylor, Washington-Marion; Kane Bergeron, Church Point; Tyrese Walker, Madison Prep; Joseph Richard; Austin Dupree, Sterlington; Fantoryian Pendleton, Carroll; Carrington McClinton, Washington-Marion; Chico Savage, Jena; Rodney Dupuis, Church Point; McClayton “Mac” Thibeaux, Kaplan; Carson Clowers, Sterlington; Dajon Richard, Patterson; Mitchell Sanford, Berwick; Lamar Farris, Jena; Chandler Moncrief, Sterlington; Quandarrius Johnson, Richwood; Mason Narcisse, St. Charles Catholic; Antonio Edwards, Avoyelles; Donald Berniard, University; Quintlan Cobb, Kaplan; Tanner Coley, Sterlington; Jared Singleton, Union Parish; Marcae Boutte, Iowa; Levi Manuel, Iota; Gavin St. Pierre, St. Charles; Jordan Jensen, St. Charles; Troy Dangerfield, Jena; Terrence Garnett, Bolton; Rhett Menard, Kaplan; Rakeyman Fields, Union Parish; Davian Madden, Jennings; Bryce Buquet, Iowa; Trajan Alexander, Marksville; Dylan Rathke, University; Kadarian Ellis, Peabody; Tahj Brown, Donaldsonville; Jordan Clark, University; Jaren Dugas, Iowa; Mekhi Hammond, Northwest; DJ Hookfin, Loranger; Shawn Williams, Marksville; J.D. Abrams, Caldwell; John Gordan McKernan; Davon Wright, Donaldsonville; Kyler Harbour, North Webster; TJ Hawthorne, North Webster; Kenric Jackson, Green Oaks; Jacob Allen, Loyola; Lexington Simon, Green Oaks.