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ACADIANA ELIMINATES HAHNVILLE, 3-1

By Michael Kiral / L’Observateur / February 26, 1998

BOUTTE – For the second straight year, Acadiana ended Hahnville’s season in the state soccer playoffs as the Rams defeated the Tigers, 3-1, in the quarterfinals Saturday afternoon.

The Rams eliminated the Tigers in the regionals last year, 2-1, on their way to the state championship.

Acadiana, the District 4-I champions with a 26-2-2 record, advances to play DeLaSalle in the semifinals.

Hahnville finished the season at 15-8-4.

The Tigers held their own against one of the top teams in the state as well as the country in the first half, battling the Rams to a one-all tie at the half. Hahnville threatened to break the deadlock in the opening minutesof the second half as Stevie Sirmon passed ahead to Richard McClendon, but McClendon’s attempt sailed over the net.

Acadiana came back as Josh Yammarine attempted a shot from the left side. Hahnville goal keeper Matt Cummins leapt to deflect the ball to JoeGriffin. After Acadiana got the ball back, Jonathan Tregre intercepted acentering pass and cleared it out.

Acadiana would take advantage of a Hahnville turnover in front of the net to break ahead. Corey Roger intercepted a pass, cut in and fired a shot intothe left side of the net, giving the Rams a 2-1 lead four minutes into the half.

Gordon McDonald prevented further damage a few minutes later as he deflected a shot by Jake Overfelt in front of the left corner of the net.

Griffin followed by clearing a side kick by the Rams.

Mark Griffin ran down a pass near the end line but his sliding kick went wide of the net. Acadiana responded minutes later as Jeff Shelton passedto Josh Vidrine in the box. Vidrine angled a shot into the left side of thenet, increasing the Rams’ lead to 3-1 at the 17 minute mark.

Acadiana kept the Tigers on the defensive for most of the remainder of the game. Acadiana goal keeper Matt Walker grabbed free kicks by Mark Griffinand Kerry Fonseca to knock away threats by the Tigers. Acadiana also hada free kick in the final minutes, but Cummins leapt up to punch it away.

Both teams played good defense in the first half, preventing few shots on goal. Acadiana had the first opportunity to get on the scoreboard but DougBakeler’s header in front sailed wide.

Hahnville then threatened with shots by Mark Griffin and Fonseca going wide of the net. Walker then tried a clearing pass but had it deflect offone of his own players in front of the net. Sirmon took the turnover but hisheader went wide, leaving the game scoreless.

The Tigers jumped out ahead as Brandon Kelly centered a pass to Jarred Larousse in front of the net. Larousse knocked it in the right side of thegoal, giving the Tigers a 1-0 lead at the 25 minute mark of the first half.

Hahnville had an opportunity to add to that lead, but a free kick by Kelly rolled just past the right corner of the goal.

Acadiana tied the score at the 29 minute mark as Justin Angelle took a pass in front of the net and knocked it in past a diving Cummins.

“We had a couple of slip ups on defense and it cost us in the second half,” Hahnville coach Rafael deVega said. “Our guys played a good game andplayed tough like we expected them to. Acadiana is a very good team. Theyare one of the best teams in the state and in the country and we played them tough.”DeVega said he was satisfied with what his team accomplished this season. The Tigers had lost to Acadiana, 6-1, earlier this season andplayed the Rams much tougher the second time around.

“It has been an outstanding season,” deVega said. “We had a very youngteam and we put a lot of things together. I am satisfied with what wehave done.”

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