Destrehan bests archrival Hahnville

Published 6:00 am Saturday, November 29, 2014


DESTREHAN — The stakes were high when Destrehan hosted Hahnville Friday night, a trip to the Class 5A semifinals on the line.

Of course, that’s nothing new: when it comes to Destrehan vs. Hahnville, the stakes are ALWAYS high.

But just as was the case during the teams’ regular season showdown, Destrehan had the edge on their cross-parish archrival once again, riding 174 Will Matthews rushing yards to a 24-12 victory in front of a jam-packed home stadium.

Destrehan (13-0) moves on to the 5A semifinals, where it will host No. 9 West Monroe. West Monroe upset top-seeded Byrd Friday night.

2014 marks the second straight appearance for Destrehan in the 5A semifinals. DHS fell to Acadiana last season in the semifinal round.

Matthews has been the Wildcats’ bellcow all season and performed like it again this time around. He gained 130 of his rushing yardage total after halftime and scored two touchdowns.

Hahnville (9-3) led first on a Mike Neal touchdown pass to Rickey Preston in the second quarter, making it a 6-0 HHS advantage.

DHS punt returner John Williams answered, his 73-yard punt return pushing the Wildcats ahead 7-6.

A 44-yard Randy Harvey field goal extended Destrehan’s lead to 10-6 at halftime.

That score held until 3:18 was left in the third quarter. Matthews punched in a 2-yard scoring run to give DHS some breathing room.

Hahnville answered, again scoring via the arm of Neal, who dialed up Brandon Singleton for a 23-yard score to make it a 5-point advantage, 17-12.

Destrehan missed a field goal on the ensuing drive, but Hahnville could not convert on its chance to take the lead, the Wildcats forcing a punt.

HHS wouldn’t have another opportunity to do so. Matthews capped off DHS’ next drive with another 2-yard run to round out the 24-12 final.

The loss brought to an end the first season at Hahnville for coach Nick Saltaformaggio. The Tigers were 2-3 at the midpoint of the regular season before winning seven straight games to reach the quarterfinals.