Comets continue roll, beat Kaplan

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 12, 2011

LAPLACE — Second-seeded St. Charles took care of business Friday night in the same manner it had over its previous 10 games, taking a 49-6 victory over Kaplan in a Class 3A bi-district game.

The Comets have precious little time to celebrate, however; the luck of the draw was not kind to them or their next foe. Patterson, the No. 15 seed, will travel to LaPlace for a regional matchup with the Comets; St. Charles finished the regular season as No. 1 in the 3A state poll. Patterson finished as No. 2. Patterson advanced after defeating Comets’ district foe Brusly, 42-28.

St. Charles (11-0) won with a suffocating defensive effort, balance offensively, and key special teams contributions — the latter got SCC off to a strong start when Jeffrey Hall scored on a 64-yard punt return after the Comet defense stopped Kaplan early.

“The beginning unfolded as we hoped it would. Jumping on them from the outset was huge,” said St. Charles coach Frank Monica.

Hall, playing at running back for the first time this season, scored SCC’s second touchdown on a 1-yard run to make it 14-0 late in the first quarter.

Austin Weber made it 21-0 early in the second quarter on his 19-yard touchdown run, then Brandon Zimmer scored from 9 yards away after a Comets’ fumble recovery in Kaplan territory.

With just under four minutes left in the second quarter, Zimmer scored again on a 12-yard run, after SCC started in good field position thanks to a Hall interception.

That made it 35-0; Zimmer would add another score before halftime and Weber on the first drive of the second half to round out the SCC scoring.

Kaplan (6-5) scored in the late stages of the game, on a 1-yard run with 4:22 left to play.

St. Charles intercepted Kaplan four times on the night and held it to 93 passing yards.

Weber led all rushers with 80 yards and two touchdowns on 10 carries. Zimmer rushed seven times for 34 yards, and Hall gained 31 yards on five attempts.

That trio entered the game in the spotlight, as St. Charles faces an immediate future without either of its stellar running backs. Marcus Hall remains out after breaking his wrist last month, and Lazedrick Thompson is now sidelined with a knee injury suffered against E.D. White in the regular season’s last week.

Monica said both are aiming to return; Hall wants to play with a soft cast and Thompson a knee brace. But the coach said that he doesn’t see either returning soon enough to face Patterson.

“I don’t see any way, this week,” said Monica. “We’re hoping that we see them again down the road, but I don’t see it this soon.”

He praised the players who stepped up at tailback on Friday. St. Charles scored all of its offensive touchdowns on the ground.

“We wanted to establish ourselves in the redzone. It was very important to come away with seven, and not three. We mixed all of them in and they kept pushing,” said Monica.

Donnie Savoie completed 10 of 14 passes for 134 yards, with no touchdowns or interceptions. Sammy Miller caught four passes for 44 yards.

Now, Patterson looms.

Monica said he felt it was unfortunate that the two teams be pitted against each other so early, after leading in the polls for the majority of the season.

“I think both (coaches) feel like they’ve been punched in the stomach,” said Monica. “To know that after this week, one of these teams is going to be home before Thanksgiving.

“We’ll have to be ready. All of our games, if we’re fortunate enough to advance, are going to be fights from here on out.”