Class 5A championship game, at a glance: Destrehan vs. Acadiana _lowres

Advocate staff photo by SHERRI MILLER Will Matthews gets a first down against East St. John on Nov. 7.

No. 4 seed Destrehan (14-0) vs. No. 15 seed Acadiana (10-4)

7 p.m., Saturday

How they got here

DESTREHAN: beat No. 29 Pineville 54-0 in bidistrict round; beat No. 20 East St. John 68-14 in regional round; beat No. 12 Hahnville 24-12 in quarterfinals; beat No. 5 West Monroe 27-22 in semifinals.

ACADIANA: beat No. 18 St. Amant 37-0 in bidistrict round; beat No. 2 Ponchatoula 38-28 in regional round; beat No. 10 Mandeville 28-14 in quarterfinals; beat No. 3 Zachary 9-3 in the semifinals.

State titles

DESTREHAN: 5 (last: 2008); ACADIANA: 3 (2013)

LAST TIME IN THE STATE FINAL: Destrehan 2008; Acadiana 2013

Storyline: Repeat or perfection

Acadiana didn’t surprise many last year when it won the 5A crown as the No. 1 seed. But this year the Rams made it to the Dome as a No. 15 seed. Destrehan, meanwhile, is seeking its third state title in eight years, and it would be the third time the Wildcats have done it with a perfect season.


DESTREHAN: This isn’t your 2013 pass-happy Destrehan team. This team does its damage mostly on the ground now but can pass (and will pass) when it needs to.

ACADIANA: Rams love to run the ball and will grind it out as much as possible. The Rams are averaging just over six passes a game this season and would like to keep it that way against Destrehan.

Key players

DESTREHAN: Senior RB Will Matthews (below) has been the man all season for the Wildcats, leading a potent ground game. The Cats’ have rotated quarterbacks this season, getting good production from both Marquise Darensbourg and Kohen Granier. A trio of receivers — Kirk Merritt, Alfred Smith and John Williams — are all dangerous playmakers. Merritt, one of the state’s top recruits, tweaked his ankle last week but should be good to go. The defense is led by safety Raekwon Morgan.

ACADIANA: Malik Eugene has rushed for 1,123 yards and 13 TDs this season, but the Rams’ offense isn’t just a one-back show. Eric Duhon and Donovin Solloman have rushed for 808 and 805 yards, respectively, and eight touchdowns apiece. Kevin Moore leads the defense with 115 tackles, including five sacks.


The Wildcats are not only looking for first state title since 2008 but are also looking to avenge last season’s loss to Acadiana in the 5A semifinals. Assuming the defense plays as solid as it has all season (no team has scored more than two TDs against Destrehan), the offense should be able to do enough to win. The Wildcats deny the Rams’ repeat to get a third perfect season (and third state title) in eight years.