The regional round match up features the two top-ranked teams in the Louisiana Sportswriter’s football poll. The Comets of St. Charles (11-0) are ranked first while the Lumberjacks of Patterson (10-0) are second.
St. Charles, the second-seed in the LHSAA playoff rankings, beat Kaplan 49-6 in the bi-district round.
The Comets took a 42-0 halftime lead en route to the win over Kaplan. St. Charles shook off the loss of star running back Lazedrick Thompson, who injured his knee two weeks ago in a win over E.D. White. Thompson (6-1, 210) is a Tulane com-mitment. SCC also lost Class 2A All-state running back/athlete Marcus Hall (5-8, 160), to a broken wrist about a month ago. The duo had accounted for 32 touchdowns and more than 1,900 rushing yards. Thompson was among the state leaders with 143 carries for 1,322 yards and 26 touchdowns.
“We miss Thompson and Hall, two quality players,” St. Charles head coach Frank Monica said. “We lost two guys that are college level players in a period of four weeks. But I think tonight the kids bonded together and said, ‘Hey, we’re going to play as a team.’ Somebody has to reel up the slack.”
Speedy running back Jeffrey Hall picked up that slack last week. He returned the opening kickoff 76-yards for a touchdown. Hall also intercepted a pass, recovered a fumble and scored a rushing touchdown. He carried seven times for 42 yards and a TD.
Freshman running back Austin Weber was the team’s leading rusher with 68 yards on eight carries and two TDs. SCC used seven different ball carriers in the game, gaining 163 yards.
“The running back situation doesn’t change what they do,” Patterson head coach Tommy Minton said. “They are going to run the ball, that’s what they do. They have good athletes and a strong line so he just moved a couple people around to makeup for the injuries.”
The Comets are led by quarterback Donnie Savoie. He has completed 92-of-139 passes for 1,409 yards and 14 touchdowns. Savoie completed 10-of-14 passes for 132 yards last week.
“The quarterback is very accurate when he throws the ball,” Minton said. “They like play-action passes, bootlegs and sprint outs but we want to put them in long yardage situations so they have to pass. They really don’t want to throw the ball; they want to control the tempo of the game with the run.”
Sammy Miller was the leading receiver last week catching five balls for 53 yards, while Weber had two catches for 23 yards. Three other receivers had one catch each.
Patterson overpowered Brusly, 42-28, Friday at home.
PHS quarterback Justice Jones threw the ball a season-high 46 times, completing 28 for 356 yards and four touchdowns. He has completed 130-of-193 passes for 1,971 yards and 29 touchdowns this season.
The 15th-seeded Jacks jumped out to a 19-6 first quarter lead on three Jones to Jaydrick Declouet touchdown passes. Declouet had eight catches for 128 yards and three touchdowns to lead PHS, while Earl Andrews had eight catches for 106 yards. Mark Jones added six receptions for 54 yards and a TD, while Trevon Stewart had five catches for 41 yards and Deondre Skinner had two catches for 27 yards.
“We want to spread the field and react to what they do defensively,” Minton said. “We will take what their alignments allow us to.”
Stewart and Mark Jones will be threats in the both the run and pass games.
Stewart has carried 60 times for 845 yards and 15 touchdowns while he’s caught 28 balls for 465 yards and seven scores. He also scored on a 57-yard punt return in the second half of last week’s win. Jones has carried 40 times for 317 yards and three scores.
Defensively, SCC has been superb. The Comets allow just 2.81 points per game this season with six shutouts.
The defensive line is very good and Hall is a star in the secondary. Defensive end/OLB Lajalein Smith (6-1, 220) was a Class 2A all-state selection last season. But Taylor Cochran (340) pounds shuts down the middle of the field. He can move for such a big kid and he makes plays. Evin Stein, 11 sacks, is the other defensive end.
“They are a pretty good defensive team and they run to the ball really well,” Minton said.
Patterson’s defense has also been elite this season but lost a key component in Friday’s win. All-state linebacker Lorenzo Phillips hurt his knee late in game on a sack and he will miss the rest of the season.
“Lorenzo went down and we will miss him, but we’re gonna move Tarrike Phillips out there and we think he will do a good job for us,” Minton said.
T. Phillips had over 50 tackles with double digit sacks and tackles for loss.
Leading tackler Tremaine Lightfoot averages nearly 10 tackles per game and Stewart and LaRon Todd hold down the secondary.
Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. at Thomas Dupuy Stadium.