Staying grounded: Unbeaten Hornets, Trojans rely on running game
Published 12:00 pm Wednesday, September 28, 2022
There won’t be many — with a better-than-remote chance of not any — passes flying through the air Thursday night when the East Beauregard Trojans host the undefeated Grand Lake Hornets.
The Trojans (2-2) and Hornets (4-0) both prefer to wear down opponents with the running game, East Beauregard with a double-slot attack, Grand Lake with the flexbone.
Both are powered by fullbacks. East Beauregard’s Gage Hildreth has run for 553 yards and eight touchdowns while Grand Lake’s Ian Vigo has gained 687 yards and 12 TDs.
Email newsletter signup
The Trojans had three 100-yard rushers in last week’s district-opening 56-30 win over Gueydan. Freddy Beall had 147 yards rushing and three touchdowns plus a 19-yard TD reception. Skyler Beebe had 136 yards and TD and Hildreth had 148 yards and two TDs. East Beauregard with 455 rushing yards.
Grand Lake ran for 305 yards in its 26-20 overtime win over Oakdale, with Vigo running for 197 yards and Brycen Guillory adding 96. Beall’s TD reception was the lone pass completed by either team in seven combined attempts.
Trojans head coach Ronnie Simmons said he’s happy the series between familiar foes can continue after Grand Lake was reclassified up to Class 2A.
“For us to be able to get to the next level as a program, we need to play good teams,” he said. “Grand Lake has been doing well for the past few years. We feel like playing teams like that is a good measuring stick for us, shows us where we are. Hopefully it is a good learning experience for us and we can use it to get ready for district.”
Simmons said his team is in good shape for a strong second half of the regular season.
“I think we are going in the right direction,” he said. “We are not as far along as I thought we’d be offensively, but we’ve had some injuries to deal with and have had to move some guys around. We are on the right path, we just have to keep going and we’ll get to where we want to be.
“I felt we made a lot of improvements last week against Gueydan. We fixed some of the issues we had against (in a Week 3 loss to) Mamou. We are still not where we want to be yet, but we’re definitely on the right track.”
Simmons said the Hornets don’t have many flaws.
“The first thing that stands out is the talent in the backfield,” he said. “This is the best group of backs I have seen at Grand Lake. They are well-coached, disciplined and the offensive line comes off the ball. You have to play really well to stop those guys. I think it is going to come down to who makes the least mistakes.”