Wildcats steady as season rolls
Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 4, 2012
By RYAN ARENA
East St. John fell twice last Tuesday at the annual post-Christmas Baton Rouge boys soccer tournament, but rebounded to defeat West Feliciana and even its record out at 7-7.
Andrew Alexander scored the lone and winning goal in the win over WFHS.
The Wildcats fell in contests against St. Amant and Parkview Baptist by scores of 4-0 and 4-2 respectively.
The matches all took place Tuesday; originally, matches were expected to be played on Monday as well due weather concerns pushed those back.
“It was one of those games. Our defense played okay, but we had a lot of trouble scoring,” said East St. John coach Paul Dupuy. “And when you can’t score, weaknesses in your defense can become magnified. It was good to get the win against West Feliciana, but even then I thought we played with tired legs.”
Dupuy did note that the Wildcats were handcuffed a bit due to the absence of a few players, most notably leading scorer Tremand McQuater.
“When we have everyone together, we’re really tough. But when we stretch out our depth, we struggle at times,” Dupuy said.
Lynndeiz Fluence and Sisaveth Paneyuvang scored goals against Parkview Baptist.
Prior to the tournament, East St. John improved its district record to 3-1 week with a victory over Bonnabel, taking a 3-2 decision over the Bruins.
Tremand McQuater, Aaron Duhe and Sisaveth Paneyuvang each scored goals for the Wildcats.
Dupuy said that his team has improved tremendously on the defensive end since the beginning of the season.
“We’ve tried some different lineups, and our new guys are picking it up now,” said Dupuy. “We’re starting to gel there. Andrew Alexander and Tremand McQuater have been working the offense well and the defense is figuring out what it needs to do. Everyone is starting to mesh.”
The Wildcats led 2-1 at halftime and 3-1 after a goal early in the second half.
“Bonnabel was never out of it. Both teams were very, very into it emotionally,” said Dupuy.
“Toward the end we got a bit winded and were a little flat, but we were able to hold on.”
Dupuy said that in the absence of usual starting goalkeeper Mario Barrera, Justin Moore stepped in and stepped up against the Bruins.
“He did a really solid job for us,” said Dupuy. “There were a few rough spots in the game against Higgins, but against Bonnabel Justin really stepped up his game and did a tremendous job.”
The win came on the heels of a week in which ESJ split two district games, defeating Higgins 4-2 but falling to Hahnville 5-2.
Against Higgins, McQuater scored three goals while Jeremy Piper added another. McQuater also came up big in the Hahnville game, despite the loss. He scored two in that contest.