Kinder switches gears to combat big-play Loreauville

Warren Arceneaux

Last week the Kinder Yellow Jackets survived its regional round game against an Avoyelles team which used a methodical ground game to control possession. This week, the Jackets will face a Loreauville team that prefers to get yards in chunks and averages 40 points per game.

The Jackets (7-2) will travel to face the Tigers (8-0) Friday night in a Class 2A quarterfinal matchup. Kinder has reached the quarterfinal round seven times over the past eight years. The Tigers reached the quarterfinals last year before losing to Amite.

In last week’s 41-18 win over Rosepine, the Tigers had three players run for more than 100 yards. None of the trio needed more than a dozen carries and each one averaged more than 9 yards per carry. Quarterback Caleb Jacob led the way with 12 carries for 138 yards and 3 touchdowns, scoring on runs of 8, 9 and 26 yards. Running back Chris Anthony piled up 140 yards on just 8 carries, scoring on runs of 23 and 30 yards. Ethan Simon added 100 yards on 11 carries.

“They are a spread, run-first team,” Kinder head coach Bret Fuselier said.

“They run a lot of the counter gap scheme, and do a lot off of it. We will need everyone to do thier job, from the linemen to the secondary. We are going to have to pressure the quarterback and be sure tacklers.”

Kinder’s trio of quarterback Graham Fawcett and running backs Tylan Ceasar and Bryce Laughlin combined for 234 rushing yards. Ceasar had 116 yards on 8 carries, including a 56-yard touchdown run. Laughlin scored two touchdowns, including the game winner late in the fourth quarter, and Fawcett found the end zone by ground with a 7-yard run and by air with a 19-yard pass to Dee Fontenot.

“(Fawcett) did a good job, he pulled the ball on the veer a couple of times, made a big play on the last drive, as did our receiver (Darius Captain), who made a big play on a tipped ball,” Fuselier said.

Fuselier said he was glad to see his team step up in a tight game last week.

“It had been a while since we had a close game, so it was good to see the guys dig deep,” he said. “They controlled the ball and limited our possessions, but the offense did well when we had the ball and the defense made plays when we had to in the second half.”The Yellow Jackets’ Graham Fawcett pushes past the tackle attempt of Avoyelles’ Xavion Davis during a Class 2A regional playoff game Friday night in Kinder.

Rick Hickman / American Press

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