Final week of football season has St. John teams eyeing playoffs

Published 2:26 pm Tuesday, October 31, 2023

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It’s Halloween Week and the first week of November. That can only mean one thing: it’s the final week of the regular football season. Next week marks the start of the playoffs and the road to the Prep Classic in the Caesars Superdome. 

Yes, it’s hard to believe but it’s Week 10 of the Prep season. For the St. John the Baptist Parish football teams, it’s the last chance to earn those all-important power points to solidify their spot in the playoffs.

While East St. John, Riverside Academy and St. Charles Catholic are assured their spots in their respective brackets, West St. John is hoping they won’t be putting away their equipment after Friday night’s game against Pine.

The Rams (2-7), under first-year coach Derron Thomas, helped themselves with a huge 54-0 win over Crescent City Christian last week. The win broke a four-game losing streak for the Westbank warriors who are trying to rebuild a once-storied program.

Senior Kylin Smith was the star of the Thursday night matchup, scoring five touchdowns. He was 8 of 11 for 94 yards with two touchdowns passing, ran seven times for 110 yards and a touchdown, returned an interception 50 yards for a touchdown, and added a 45-yard punt return for a touchdown. Chance Bovie and J’Kyrin Morris had receiving touchdowns as well.

The Rams will have their hands full with Class 3A Pine, which is 7-2 coming off a 42-21 loss to Bogalusa. They need a win and some help to put themselves in the Division IV non-select bracket next week.

Most football fans will have eyes on LaPlace Friday night for the matchup between undefeated St. Charles Catholic and undefeated Newman. It’s for the District 10-2A championship, sure, but it’s for a lot more than that. The Comets are No. 2 in the power rankings; the Greenies are No. 3. In all likelihood, this is just Round 1 with a playoff rematch on the horizon.

St. Charles handled Country Day last week 49-7, notching their fourth straight win with 43 points or more. It also extended the team’s winning streak to 16.

Jeremiah Wills led the Comets offense with 12 rushes for 94 yards and a pair of touchdowns, plus he caught one for a 41-yard score. Skylar Edwards and Gideon Marix also ran for scores. Quarterback Brady St. Pierre was 6 of 9 with the one touchdown pass to Wills, and he ran for two more. 

East St. John had everyone’s attention last week as the Wildcats hosted the undefeated two-time defending state champion Destrehan Wildcats in a key District 7-5A matchup. East St. John had just come off its first loss of the season, to Terrebonne, and, as expected, gave the visiting Wildcats a challenge.

Destrehan had to rally to overtake East St. John 23-13 – the most points allowed by Destrehan all season. Quarterback Lorenzo Zeno was 11 of 21 for 147 yards and one 45-yard touchdown to Kendall Walker, and he ran for 62 yards on 11 carries.  The Wildcats’ other six points came from a pair of field goals by Jason Colleo. 

East St. John has completed its district schedule and will travel to New Orleans Thursday night to play a non-district game against Holy Cross at Tad Gormley Stadium. 

The Riverside Academy Rebels have secured their post-season berth with a solid 8-1 record following Friday night’s 49-0 victory over Varnado. Once again, Dedric Lastie led the way, rushing for five touchdowns on the night to finish with 241 yards on 15 carries. Quarterback Brock Bourgeois scored one as well. Jaedon Butler had a 50-yeard interception return for a touchdown.

The Rebels will close their regular season Friday night against Crescent City Christian at Muss Bertolino Stadium in Metairie.