Important game for W-M, LCCP
From 2-8 to 7-1 and district football champ. The Lake Charles College Prep Trailblazers’ rise to the top of District 4-3A didn’t take long.
In its first season in Class 3A, LCCP went 2-8 last year, but is now in position to win the district title outright tonight when it plays at Washington-Marion.
LCCP locked up at least a share of the title last week and its first in any sport.
“It means everything,” LCCP head coach Erick Franklin said. “It validates all the hard work they have put in the last four years.
“It is a big, big title game for us this week.”
Two weeks ago, LCCP lost its first game of the season, to Class 2A No. 1 Notre Dame, but that loss helped the Trailblazers refocus and that followed with a 48-7 win over Iowa, last year’s District 4-3A champ.
“I think that Notre Dame game really made the kids focus in,” Franklin said. “When you take a team like Notre Dame to the wire and didn’t do anything in the first half, that is saying a lot about my boys. They are locked in and ready to make the run.”
Franklin credits the team’s improved maturity and adding former McNeese State standout defensive back Terence Cahee as defensive coordinator. Cahee has led a big turnaround. The defense has gone from allowing 35.7 points a game to 12.5 this season.
“I think it was another year for the kids to mature,” Franklin said. “It is the same kids that have been part of the program for four years.
“Adding a coach to the staff to help them develop is the biggest thing from last year. It makes a difference because it frees me up and I can just oversee both sides. Adding Cahee was big. We just haven’t had enough coaches. With him coming here, it just made our coaching staff better.”
Defense will be a must this week. W-M is averaging 36 points a game.
The Trailblazers are looking to disrupt W-M’s passing game. Quarterback Mar’quez Chagois has completed 60 percent of his passes for 1,667 yards and 21 touchdowns to five interceptions. His targets include three receivers with more than 300 yards in William Carswell (585 yds., 7 TDs), JaThan Royal (307 yds., 3 TDs) and D’corrion Malveaux (408 yds., 4 TDs).
LCCP defensive back Shane Bradford has four interceptions and seven pass break-ups while Sean Williams has two picks, including a 41-yard picksix last week.
“I think that we are pretty good in the secondary,” Franklin said. “I think the defensive line will be the game changer for us.
“I don’t know if they can block us up front. Any defensive back needs a good defensive line up front. I think that we will be fine.”
Jennings (3-5, 2-2) will try to break out of its first threegame losing streak since 2015 when it hosts South Beauregard (4-4, 2-2) . The Golden Knights have won three of their last four games and have a chance to get above .500 for the first time this season.
St. Louis Catholic (3-5, 2-2) will put its two-game winning streak on the line when it travels to Westlake (2-6, 1-3) and will face one off the area’s top running backs in J.J. Ross (1,200 yds., 14 TDs).
Iowa (3-5, 3-2) is idle.
Sam Houston (6-2, 3-2) and Barbe (6-2, 3-2) are chasing home playoff games and will finish the regular season with consecutive home games. Barbe will host Comeaux (4-4, 3-2) while Sam Houston will take on Lafayette (3-5, 2-3), looking to end a two-game losing streak.
Sulphur (4-4, 3-2) will hit the road for its final two games, starting at New Iberia (2-6, 2-3), which upset Comeaux last week, 8-7. LaGrange (0-8, 0-5) will travel to Acadiana (7-1, 4-1), which can wrap up the district title with a win.
Leesville will travel to play Tioga with the district championship on the line. A win would give the Wampus Cats their third consecutive district title and second outright.
Leesville has won 10 consecutive district games dating to the 2016 season and has owned the series recently, winning 12 of 13.
Iota (8-0, 5-0) gets a share of the 5-3A title with a win at Pine Prairie (3-5, 2-3) and can win it outright next week at home against Eunice (7-1, 4-1).