After strong victory, Rebels set to host McCoy

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 12, 2011



RESERVE — Riverside coach Mickey Roussel said he couldn’t ask for much more from his team after a 56-20 win over Cohen (0-6, 0-2) last week in a District 9-2A game in the Rebels’ homecoming game.

Now, he wants to see the Rebels continue on the same track as it turns its attention to a non-district foe, as Miller McCoy visits Riverside (4-2, 3-1) Friday night.

McCoy’s Norbert Ralph III is among the state’s leading passers. After consecutive blowout losses to St. Charles and Karr, the Lions bounced back with a 42-12 win over Grace King in the first of only two home games for McCoy this season.

McCoy has faced those teams, South Terrebonne, St. Amant and Newman, the latter a Rebels’ district foe that the Lions defeated on the road earlier this season.

“They’re 2-4, but they’ve played a heavyweight schedule,” said Roussel. “They don’t back down from anybody. They put up a lot of points and can definitely give you trouble. We don’t want to give up the big play. Make them drive eight to 12 plays. At the high school level, that creates more opportunities for something bad to happen for them.”

McCoy’s spread attack has racked up 30 points or more three times; in contrast, stronger defenses have had success against the Lions, as the offense was shutout in its losses to Karr and St. Charles.

Defensively, the Lions struggle. They’ve allowed over 40 points four times, and in two of those 55 or more.

“We’ve been in our offenses’ ear, about how we need to take advantage when they’re on the field,” said Roussel. “Even beyond scoring points, keeping their offense on the sideline.”

Special teams is a point of emphasis this week for Roussel, as the one black mark on the Rebels’ performance on Friday was a trio of kickoff return scores by Cohen’s Lamont Massey.

“Offensively and defensively, I couldn’t ask for much more. But the returns, that’s the one area of concern,” said Roussel. “At the same time, we held some starters out on special teams that were nicked up, trying to get healthy. We had been doing pretty well in that department coming into it. But it’s something we’re addressing in practice.”

It ultimately didn’t matter Friday as the Rebels scored early and often behind a rush attack that produced 321 yards. Jonquial Sanders rushed for 197 yards and two touchdowns on 16 carries. Nate Williams carried nine times for 55 yards and a score and caught three passes for 57 yards and a touchdown.

Linebacker Evan Veron recovered a fumble and scored on a 40-yard return that put RA ahead 21-6.

Tate Scioneaux completed 9 of 18 pass attempts for 116 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. He connected with Williams and Brandon Millet for his scores.

RA led 35-14 at halftime.

“We challenged our offensive line last week. We hadn’t rushed like we thought we could going in, and we ran for over 300 yards,” said Roussel. “So you hope to build on that.”