Part of the allure of Shreveport’s Battle on the Border football showcase is the series of matchups that involve out-of-state teams and Louisiana teams.
What happens when two teams with seemingly little in common, are connected? Fans will find out when Catholic High meets North Little Rock at about 8 p.m. Friday at Independence Stadium.
Catholic High coach Gabe Fertitta and North Little Rock coach Jamie Mitchell have known each other for several years, dating to Fertitta's stint as offensive coordinator at Itawamba (Mississippi) Community College. Mitchell’s son was Itawamba’s starting tight end.
Because the Bears won their season opener Thursday, Fertitta took his family on a trip to watch North Little Rock (0-1) in its 23-0 loss to Whitehaven (Memphis, Tennessee) last Friday.
“Jamie has something like 220 career wins and he said that was one of the top five defenses he has ever faced,” Fertitta said. “That was a very good defense ... one of the best I've seen.
"Jamie suspended their quarterback, tight end and wide receiver for the game. So you can’t read too much into that one. I do think win or lose, we’ll have an idea where we stand when the game is over.”
The Catholic-North Little Rock game is one of two Battle on the Border games set for Friday. C.E. Byrd meets West Monroe in the first game at 5:30 p.m.
Saturday’s schedule opens with Zachary (0-1) taking on Deerfield Beach, Florida, (0-2) in the first game at 11 a.m. John Curtis vs. Westlake of Atlanta follows at 3 p.m. Two Shreveport teams, Captain Shreve and Woodlawn, play in the final game at 7 p.m.
LHSAA, select schools update
Catholic High Athletic Director J.P. Kelly said Loyola Prep Principal John Leblanc has begun the process of polling the LHSAA’s select schools to see what ones would be in favor of returning play in the Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA Prep Classic Dec. 12-14. Leblanc is the private school representative on the LHSAA's executive committee.
Select schools were given two weeks to respond to the LHSAA’s offer to bring the select schools back into the fold for the football championship for 2019. The deadline is Sept. 19.
LHSAA member schools approved proposals that gave select schools the right to host standalone title events in the split sports — football, boys/girls basketball, baseball and softball.
Kelly said three sites have expressed interest in hosting select football title games. A desire by some schools to continue playing at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome has been a point of debate.
Thrive-Dunham now Thursday
The Dunham School (1-0) will host to Thrive Academy (0-1) for a nondistrict football game Thursday night instead of Friday.
It is the first meeting for the two schools and just the second varsity game for Thrive, a Class 1A school, which played junior varsity football last year.
Former False River coach Darrin Moore picked up his first win as head coach at Pineville. Moore left FRA to become an assistant to his college coach, Dennis Dunn, at Pineville.
Dunn, the former Louisiana College and Evangel Christian coach, moved from Pineville to North DeSoto, following the 2018 season.