Someone’s getting knocked out of 3-5A race
The herd at the top of the District 3-5A race will get culled this week.
The question is, by how much?
It’s a four-way tie with Acadiana (6-1, 3-1), Comeaux (4-3, 3-1), Sam Houston (6-1, 3-1) and Sulphur (4-3, 3-1), and at least one — and as many three — will be out of the running this week.
Sam Houston suffered its first loss last week, 35-10 at Acadiana, but remains in the running for its first district title since 2009.
“We are coming off a tough loss and it is tough for the boys,” Sam Houston head coach Chad Paulk said. “But as far as we look at it, it is a new start for us.”
Sam Houston will face a team it has never beaten when they host Barbe on Friday at Wayne Hooper Memorial Stadium in Moss Bluff. The Broncos did come close in 2014 and ’15, but Barbe won both of those games with last-second touchdowns.
Paulk said he’s leery of the Bucs’ defense that held New Iberia to seven points and 75 yards last week and is hoping his team can clean up its turnover problem after committing four last week against Acadiana and eight in its last two games.
“Their defense is playing very well at this point in the season,” Paulk said. “When you get this late in the season, you become a well-oiled machine and they are playing a lot faster than they were at the beginning of the year.
“One of the biggest things we are talking about this week is taking care of the football and playing faster.”
One big question mark for the Broncos is: Will star running back Gerron Duhon will suit up? Duhon has 843 yards and 13 touchdowns, but he only played two snaps last week.
“He has been having some nagging injuries,” Paulk explained. “He practiced Monday and we will see how he feels on Friday. If he is not ready, we are not going to force that issue.”
Barbe played without quarterback Luke Richard (72-112-7, 1,003 yards, 7 TDs) last week, but junior Davis Meche filled in nicely, completing 15 of 22 passes for 165 yards and two touchdowns.
Sulphur has won three straight, but will put that streak on the line when it hosts No. 7 Acadiana. Sulphur won 32-20 last year.
“Our kids understand we are playing against Acadiana and how physical the game needs to be to stop their offense,” Sulphur head coach Jeff Wainwright said. “We are just going to get out there and play hard and run to the football.”
Acadiana is averaging 318 yards per game on the ground with three backs with more than 400 yards rushing, led by Dillon Monette (847 yds., 11 TDs). Quarterback Keontae Williams is a running threat this year with 254 yards and four TDs.
“This year is a little bit different then in the past,” Wainwright said. “They are running their quarterback a little bit more and a few more pitches on the option. Each year they have a different set of circumstances around their offense that you have to understand.”
Comeaux will host New Iberia (1-3, 1-6) while LaGrange (0-4, 0-7) will travel to Lafayette (2-5, 1-3).
Leesville can wrap up a share of its third consecutive District 4-3A championship if it can win this year’s edition of the battle for the Hooper Trophy when its hosts DeRidder.
Leesville has won last two meetings, 27-0 and 42-28, but DeRidder won four of five before that, including a 56-20 thumping of the Wampus Cats in 2015.
Lake Charles College Prep is knocking on the door of its first district championship after four years of existence and needs to win two of its last three to claim at least a share of the title.
LCCP (6-1, 3-0) owns a one-game lead over Jennings (3-4, 2-1) after the Bulldogs lost to Westlake (2-5, 1-3) 21-14 last week. The Trailblazers will host Iowa, last year’s district champ, at John J. Mims Stadium, Washington-Marion (3-4, 1-2) will travel to South Beauregard (3-4, 1-2), while Jennings will travel to St. Louis (2-5, 2-2) on Thursday.
The district race started with four undefeated teams, but only one remains — No. 2 Iota (7-0, 4-0). The Bulldogs won their first three district games by an average of 31.7 points then survived a close call last week to beat Church Point 15-13. They will host Port Barre (2-5, 1-3).