Rams, Patriots on course for shootout
By RYAN ARENA
LAPLACE — West St. John’s “basketball on grass” up-tempo offense was derailed in Friday’s 23-0 loss to Holy Cross, but a quick cure could be around the bend: a matchup with another fast-paced offensive team that keeps the scoreboard operators on alert.
But while the Rams figure to get their offense back on track at Ellender this Friday night, the Patriots themselves average 46 points per game.
This one could turn into a track meet.
Ellender (3-1) holds wins of 40-14 over Madison Prep, 54-48 over H.L. Bourgeois and 56-50 over Pointe Coupee Central. It’s lone loss came to Terrebonne, 41-34.
Patriots quarterback Dustin Creppel passed for 238 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 40 yards and another score last week to lead his team past Pointe Coupee. That rushing score proved the game-winner, coming with 45 seconds left.
Tailback Justin Johnson rushed for 191 yards and scored three touchdowns. Dan Mitchell accounted for more than 200 total yards, tallying 170 yards receiving and 59 rushing while scoring two touchdowns. Ellender posted 535 yards Friday, combining with Pointe Coupee Central for 1,091 total yards.
The Rams (2-2) could use the return of tailback Jeremy Jackson, who missed last week’s game with a shoulder injury. Jackson had tallied 170 yards and two touchdowns in just over a half at Riverside two weeks ago before leaving the game. His status for Friday night was up in the air at presstime.
West St. John took remarkable care of the football a year ago, but turned it over six times against Holy Cross. Three of those were on interceptions by Austin Howard, who was intercepted just three times in all of the 2012 season.
For the Rams, it’s the final predistrict game of the season. West St. John will enter 8-1A play without having faced another Class 1A team; the Rams will face 4A Ellender after facing two 2A teams (Riverside and St. James), a 3A team (Bogalusa) and one 5A team (Holy Cross).