ESJ, Hahnville out to break losing streaks
MICHAEL KIRAL / L’Observateur / October 21, 1998
BOUTTE – East St. John and Hahnville, two teams coming off heart-breaking one-point losses last week, square off in District 6-5A action Friday in Hahnville’s Tiger Stadium.
Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.East St. John heads into the contest with a 4-2 overall record and a 2-2mark in District 6-5A after a two-game losing streak. Hahnville has lostfive in a row, falling to 1-5 overall and 0-4 in district play.
The game, besides being an important one in the playoff race, also has its share of storylines. Lou Valdin, who resurrected the East St. John programin 1996, leading the Wildcats to two straight playoff appearances, is now an assistant coach at Hahnville. And the Tigers will be out to avenge a 45-44 loss to East St. John last year, the Wildcats’ first victory in the seriessince 1959.
But past records will not have an impact as both teams look to get back on track. East St. John fell to Destrehan, 14-13, last week on a blocked extrapoint attempt and a late fourth-down conversion by Destrehan.
The defense helped keep the team in the game, holding the potent Destrehan rushing attack to 161 yards, 68 in the second half.
Senior linebacker Samson Monica led the attack, making 12 tackles and recovering two fumbles, the first of which set up the Wildcats’ second score. The Wildcat defense has allowed just one team to score as many as16 points in a game this season, Bourgeois two weeks ago.
But for the second week in a row, the East St. John offense struggled. TheWidlcats were held to 23 yards rushing. Chuckie Burl led the way with 12yards, including a 3-yard touchdown run.
Floyd Smith completed 12 of his 29 passes for 156 yards and a 28-yard touchdown to Roydel Williams but was intercepted three times. A weekearlier against H.L. Bourgeois, the Wildcats gained over 100 yards rushingbut were held to 62 yards passing in a 16-7 loss.
On the season, Smith has thrown for 1,003 yards and 11 touchdowns. Thethree interceptions doubled his total for the year. Williams continues tobe one of the top receivers in the area, catching seven passes for 93 yards Friday. He now has 26 catches for 541 yards and five touchdowns. Hahnville had offensive troubles earlier in the season but has started moving the ball better the last two weeks. The Tigers gained 228 totalyards against Central Lafourche Friday. But like East St. John, a missedextra point made the difference as the Trojans defeated the Tigers, 14-13.
Hahnville dominated on the stat sheet with 122 yards rushing and 116 passing. Anthony Kenner led the ground game with 62 yards on 14attempts. Dawan Landry completed 13 of his 25 passes for 116 yards. The Hahnville defense, on the other hand, has been consistent throughout the season. The Tigers held the Trojans to 112 total yards while forcingtwo fumbles. Central Lafourche managed just 87 yards on 32 carries, a2.56 yard per carry average. Passing wise, the Trojans completed threepasses for 25 yards.
Hahnville leads the overall series, 11-8. The series, which began in 1946,has been one of streaks with East St. John (Reserve) winning the firstseven. Hahnville won in 1956 before the Wildcats took the next three. Hahnville would win in 1960 and ’66-69 before the series was discontinued. The teams started meeting again in 1995 with the Tigerswinning that year and in 1996.
East St. John won last year despite two 50-yard field goals by KerryFonseca. Linebacker Matt Roussel knocked down Antoine Williams’ pass inthe end zone on a two point conversion attempt in the final minute to preserve the victory.
East St. John travels to Central Lafourche next Friday while Hahnville goeson the road to South Lafourche.
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