Comets seeking turnaround vs. McCoy

Published 11:45 pm Tuesday, September 24, 2013


LAPLACE — It’s a rare occurrence when St. Charles Catholic drops consecutive games, a fact that coach Frank Monica and his coaching staff have undoubtedly noted to their Comet players in the wake of losses on the road to high-powered foes East Jefferson and East Ascension.
After the East Ascension loss, a 42-19 defeat that saw SCC struggle mightily to limit LSU-committed running back Sione Palelei. The Spartan senior gained 164 yards on just seven carries and added 155 yards on four catches. He also added an 89-yard kickoff return score that propelled a second-half surge for EA.
Monica said that the main focus is a simple one for the Comets as they attempt to get back on track at home Friday against Miller McCoy: tackle, and do it well.
“The big thing is that our defense gets back to tackling,” said Monica. “We missed eight tackles on that one kickoff return and they took the momentum. It was an exciting run for them and on his part, but we’re not staying on our feet or making the plays we should be making.’
“Miller McCoy is very explosive. They had a good chance to win a shootout in their opener against a Lakeshore team that’s been pretty impressive since then. We’re not playing very good football right now. We give them all the respect in the world. We’d better, because right now we’re a vulnerable team.”
Miller McCoy (0-3) boasts a pair of noted local Division I commitments already in defensive back Stephon Lofton (Tulane) and running back/defensive back Corey Turner.
The Lions were 1-9 a year ago but returned 16 starters this season, including its entire front seven defensively. McCoy hasn’t been shy about scheduling strong competition, though: all of its opponents so far have been at Class 4A or 5A level. McCoy fell by one in its opener, a 55-54 double overtime loss at Lakeshore, then was on the wrong end of a pair of lopsided scores in each of the last two weeks, falling 66-14 at Landry-Walker and 40-14 at Helen Cox.
Those losses haven’t quieted Monica’s concerns, however.
“We’ll be the least talented team they’ve played,” he said. “The three opponents they’ve had, you see Walker-Landry just beat Hahnville, then you’ve got 4A Helen Cox. They haven’t backed down from playing quality competition.”
Monica said that it’s hard to pin down what McCoy’s plan will be against the Comets (1-2) defensively; the Lions’ first three opponents ran spread offensive attacks, while SCC brings a more balanced, ball-control approach to the field.
But he does know that with Lofton and Turner roaming in the secondary, overaggressiveness in the SCC passing attack could lead to unfortunate results.
“You can see the speed and quickness of those defensive backs on the film,” said Monica. “When we try to throw it, it better be to open guys. They can break on the ball quickly.”
St. Charles quarterback Austin Weber left last week’s loss late with an unspecified injury, but Monica said that the junior will return to action this week. Weber has rushed for 97 yards and passed for 77 yards and two scores before departing the game.