Howard connects with Moll three times in scrimmage

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 25, 2011



EDGARD – West St. John completed its spring football work last week with its spring game, where quarterback Austin Howard and wide receiver Jarius Moll provided a welcome preview to fans of what they might expect this fall.

The sophomore-to-be quarterback found Moll three times for touchdowns to highlight the offensive day for the Rams.

“It took us a little while to get rolling,” said West St. John coach Robert Valdez of his offense. “The defense really showed up and looked good early. After a little while we started completing some passes and got the running game cranked up.”

Valdez noted that his primary tailbacks, Jeremy Jackson and Kylum Favorite, each had strong days running the ball (“Each ran extremely well,” he said) and that Austin Terry complimented Moll at wide receiver with a couple of receptions for big gains.

“We’re still looking to spread the ball out to a lot of different people,” he said. “Get it to a number of receivers and run off of play action. We feel like we’ve got the weapons to give people fits.”

Valdez said that a main goal of the spring was to increase the team’s tempo at practice and become more efficient and productive in the time they have. That was especially important in a shortened spring period that saw the Rams get in only six days of work due to different scheduling issues. Ten is the maximum allotment mandated by the LHSAA as of 2011.

“In such a short time, we really were only working with one blocking scheme, three running plays, a couple of pass plays. At the end of the day, we’re looking to get Austin (Howard) some high percentage passes, set up play action, and establish an aggressive mindset. That goes for both sides of the ball because defensively, we’ll be attacking.”

As is also the case with other teams in the parish, beginning to re-solidify the offensive line was one of the first things Valdez noted as a goal of the spring period, and said the Rams made some headway there.

He noted Lawrence Williams as someone who stood out defensively at free safety, breaking up passes and being generally aggressive on that side of the ball, while also playing well on offense at receiver.

Corey Rainey was another he said that opened eyes defensively, giving the team another potential strong option at linebacker.

The Rams’ defensive line projects to be a strength, with Ronnie Feist, Steven Brignac, Jermoine Nora, Laron Washington and Eric Bell forming a deep and talented group.

Feist will lead the defense, an LSU commitment who was named the 2010 St. John Parish Defensive Most Valuable Player by L’Observateur.