“The game was originally scheduled for Friday, but it was moved to Thursday because there are so many games in the Lafayette area that the officials’ association didn’t have enough officials for all of Friday’s games,” Patterson’s head coach/ athletic director Tommy Minton said. “They have moved a couple games to Thursday every week because of the shortage, and this week it just happens to be us.”
For Abbeville (0-6, 0-3 District 9-3A), the day of the game doesn’t matter very much, they still face an uphill battle.
“Patterson is probably the most athletic team in the state at the 3A level,” Abbeville head coach Larry Breaux said. “In a normal week, we tell (the players) we need to make as few mistakes as we can. This week we’re telling them they can’t make any mistakes.”
The Wildcats are led by the stellar play of running back Patrick Landry.
Landry comes into Thursday’s game needing only 66 yards to break the 1,000-yard threshold for the 2011 season. Landry has carried 87 times for 934 yards, including 184 yards and a touchdown in last week’s 16-12 loss to Erath. He also had three receptions for 25 yards and a touchdown.
“We’ve had a few big games from him and none of them have been wins,” Breaux said. “We just can’t count on one player to decide the outcome for us. We pretty much need for everybody to have a big game.”
AHS quarterback Ross Duhon has completed 13-of-32 passes for 201 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions. The Wildcats’ leading receiver is Brock Clark, who had three catches for 54 yards last week.
Of course, Abbeville’s stats are not on par with Patterson, the second-ranked team in Class 3A.
PHS (5-0, 3-0) rolled over Kaplan, 61-6, last week at the Sugardome. The Jacks’ exploded for over 500 yards offense.
Quarterback Justice Jones continued his standout play hitting on 12-of-16 passes for 323 yards and five touchdowns. The senior has completed 63-of-102 passes for 1,138 yards with 16 TDs. The all-state selection last season is completing 62 percent of his passes.
His favorite target has been University of Houston commitment Jaydrick Declouet. He had three catches for 93 yards and two scores Friday. The speedy wideout has caught 29 balls for 478 yards and 10 touchdowns to lead the Jacks’ receivers.
Two-way star Trevon Stewart has been dynamic as a runner and receiver on offense. He has 400 yards rushing and near 200 yards through the air.
“It’s no doubt that we are physically stronger than the teams we have been playing,” Minton said. “We’re playing to get better every week, we have goals that go past week 10 and in order to accomplish those goals we gotta work to get better. We have to focus on the little things and the kids have done a great job of doing that. We ask that they focus and play hard, and if they can’t do that then we will put someone else in their place.”
Abbeville’s defense is led by defensive end Alonzo Williams (6-3, 248), who has already committed to play college football at Texas A&M.
Patterson’s starting defense has yet to allow a touchdown this season and has given up just 18 points as a unit.
“We’re pretty familiar with what they do defensively,” Breaux said. “So we’re basing the game plan around that.”
The Lumberjacks have Division I talent at linebacker and in the secondary but it’s been the play of the young defensive line that has been surprising.
“We were hit hard upfront by graduation,” Minton said. “But the guys there have played with good effort and intensity.”
Jade May, Josiah Parker and Tarrike Phillips all played well on the d-line last week.
The Jacks also caused four more turnovers.
“We have done a good job of causing turnovers with good hard hits,” Minton said. “We’ve really played well defensively.”
Eagles start district play
Central Catholic (5-1) begins district play 7 p.m. tonight at Tiger Stadium against Ascension Episcopal (2-3).