The Bridge at Cecilia: Tigers eye parish crown
After last Friday’s win over St. Martinville Breaux Bridge has only to defeat Cecilia this week to claim its third straight St. Martin Parish championship. But the Bulldogs were the last parish team to defeat The Bridge, taking a 38-21 victory in 2010, and the win-starved ’Dogs are hungry for revenge as to host the Tigers Friday.
Meanwhile St. Martinville will try to get back into the win column when it visits Teurlings Catholic.
BB at CECILIA
Breaux Bridge again relied on its ball-hawking defense in a 23-6 victory over The ’Ville last Friday. The Tiger defensive unit accounted for 16 of The Bridge’s 23 points, claiming 4 turnovers, notching a safety and running a blocked field goal and fumble recovery back for touchdowns.
“Thank goodness our defense showed up again,” said a relieved coach Paul Broussard on Monday. “Coach (Danny) Carroll did a good job in preparing his defense for us and we struggled a bit offensively.”
The Tiger defense will be tested by an explosive Cecilia attack that has seen sophomore running back Raymond Calais rip off touchdowns of 77 and 88-yards over the past two games.
“They’ve got some good, young talent and most of their losses have been very close,” says Broussard. “They seem to be struggling a bit defensively, but they’re improving with each game.”
Cecilia trailed Westgate by only 3 points going into the final quarter of last week’s game before losing by 28-18. “It’s so disappointing for our kids,” coach Terry Martin says. “They continue to play hard and I’m really proud of the way they’re staying focused. They’ve never come close to giving up and with the exception of one game, we’ve been right in every contest.”
Martin points out that Cecilia has had a “really bad” turnover ratio through its first 7 games. “It’s not so much that we’re fumbling, but it’s been an inability to take advantage of the other teams’ turnovers,” he explained.
Tyler Doucet filled in for place kicker Drake Frederick in the Westgate game because Frederick was nursing a sore foot. Although Doucet made the only PAT he tried and was 1-for-2 on field goals, Frederick will likely return to his duties this Friday.
Reflecting on Breaux Bridge’s dominating defense, Martin points out that coach Paul Broussard is keeping his offense very basic and letting the defense win games.
“They’ve got two very athletic linebackers and all their defensive players really fly to the ball,” he adds.
“We saw some improvement in our fundamentals last Friday,” says Martin. “We continue to improve each week and we still have the goal of earning a playoff berth.”
SM at TEURLINGS
Addressing the critical turnovers in last week’s loss to Breaux Bridge, Tiger coach Danny Carroll admits that fumbles and interceptions “have been or Achilles heel all season.”
He says one of the problems last Friday was that senior QB Quentin Mitchell “was just trying to do too much. He was pressing all night long and not getting the ball out in time.”
Carroll said he put backups Jordan Papillion and Collin Guidry in for a few series to “settle Quentin down a bit.”
“But I was super proud of the job our defense did in limiting Breaux Bridge to one touchdown,” he added. “Their play carried over from last week’s second half against Cecilia and I feel we’ve finally found our niche.”
Looking ahead to Teurlings, Carroll feels his Tigers will match up well with the Rebels. “They run the same offense that we do, so our defense has a lot of experience with it. The season has been a roller coaster ride for us offensively, but if we can cut down on the turnovers we still have a good shot to make the playoffs.”