Basile running back Kendrick Ceaser. (Michelle Higginbotham / Special to the American Press)
Last Modified: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 7:22 PM
In the quarterfinals for the first time since 1996, the Basile Bearcats will have to overcome some bad recent history if they are to match that season’s run to the semifinals.
The No. 13 Bearcats (11-1) will host seven-time state champion No. 5 Kentwood (10-1) Friday night. Last year the Kangaroos beat the Bearcats 40-12 in the first round of the playoffs. They also beat Basile 39-10 in the regional round in 2004, the last time Basile had won a playoff game before this season, and 42-13 bi-district round in 2005.
Basile beat Plain Dealing 25-14 on the road last week, while Kentwood beat Country Day 34-17. The Kangaroos are on an eight-game winning streak in which they’ve outscored opponents 317-62. During the past four games, the Kangaroos have beaten four playoff teams by a combined score of 187-49. Kentwood has three shutouts and held three other opponents to seven points or fewer.
The Kangaroos defense will be tested by Basile running back Kendrick Ceaser, who ran for 221 yards last week.
Basile head coach Tony Bertrand said his team will benefit from being familiar with Kentwood and seeing a similar type of team last week.
“We know what to expect,” Bertrand said. “They are a traditional power in the playoffs. It is going to help that we just played a team (Plain Dealing) that has more speed than us. We will have to contain them and not allow the big plays. We did that pretty well last week. Our defensive backs did a good job of lining up correctly and batting some passes down. If we are able to stop the run like we have all year, and they have to resort to passing, I feel pretty comfortable.”
Bertrand said his secondary is in good form.
“(Cornerback) Mason Deshotel was excellent last week,” Bertrand said. “Trenton Pelloquin had an interception and Ceaser is our other corner. The kids are so excited to be playing football now, I don’t think playing Kentwood again is a motivation. It is the same thought process we have had all year: take it one game at a time. We have to keep the same focus, you can’t have any slipups in the playoffs or your season will be over.”
The winner will play the Southern Lab-Ouachita Christian winner in the semifinal round.