Posts tagged ‘pigskin preview’

Tiger Football Playing Up to Expectations

The 2013-2014 season isn’t a rebuilding year, but East Feliciana football coach Cedric Anderson said a lot of players will have to step up to fill in for graduating seniors.

“Along with losing Corey (Hawkins) and Kendall (Beckwith), we also lost four very good senior offensive linemen and D’Quan Franklin was just an ironman for us on defense these last two years,” Anderson said. “And you can’t really replace them per se, but I believe they set good examples and some of the younger guys have stepped up.”

Senior wide receiver and cornerback Danny Johnson said they are taking a bottom up approach in that they are making sure the freshmen and sophomores also understand the importance of leadership and teamwork.
Along with going to camps at the University of Alabama and LSU, Johnson said he was focused on helping his fellow tigers gel as a team.

“I’ve been really leaning on Danny, Darryl Matthews (wide receiver), Kameron McKnight (running back) and Tyquincey Kilbourne (linebacker) to pick up the slack and see how far they can take us,” Anderson said.

The Tigers finished last season 8-4 with a 14-16 loss in the Class 3A state semi-finals to Notre Dame of Crowley.

East Feliciana is now in Class 2A, District 6.

Anderson said he considered the season a success and he plans to take the same approach this year.

“Overall, I think our guys did great. Playing a tough non district schedule really helped,” Anderson said. “We played a very good Zachary team and lost by one point and the week before we beat a really good Richwood (Monroe) team in overtime.”

Anderson said those losses, including a tough 12-19 loss to Salmen of Slidell prepared his guys for the playoffs.

“I really saw that in the quarterfinals against Union Parish. We went into the fourth quarter 16-0 and the kids were able to reflect back on those tough early losses and get that win,” Anderson said.

The Tigers went on to beat the Farmers 22-16 to get to the semis and face Notre Dame. Anderson said along with Notre Dame being a really good team, they also took advantage of the Tigers’ turnovers to get the win.

McKnight, a senior and outside linebacker, said he is really looking forward to playing Zachary again this year.

“They are a good team and they’ve beat us two years in a row,” McKnight said. He said their downfall last year was that morale started to drop after referees made multiple play calls that they didn’t agree with.

Anderson said he had a good turnout for summer two-a-day practices in June and July, which consisted of lots of weights, conditioning and speed drills.

This season’s schedule will feature non-district games against West Feliciana, Belaire and Zachary before starting district play.

“We are in a district with a lot of good teams and some very good coaches, so it will be a dogfight every night,” Anderson said. “We’re just looking forward to competing.”

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August 25, 2013 at 6:45 pm

Saints Playing for Post-Season Glory


QB Ryan Reed hands the ball off to running back Anthony Ebbs

QB Ryan Reed hands the ball off to running back Anthony Ebbs

West Feliciana football coach Robb Odom said continuing to improve on the little things is what will push his guys farther into the play-offs for the 2013-2014 season.

“I think we did good this last season and I’m looking to build on that,” Odom said.

Senior linebacker Seth Sterling said this season he will be better at knowing his assignments for tackles.

“The Combine in Denham Springs was really helpful because I got to see the competition. I also improved on my time in the 40 (meter dash),” Sterling said.

Sterling said he wants the Saints to be a dominant defense this season and he plans to do a better job on seeing certain plays coming. He also would like to get a couple of turnovers or an interception and hopes to make first-string all-district team.

The Saints finished the 2012-2013 season at 7-4 with a 49-22 loss to North DeSoto in the first round of the Class 3A District 6 playoffs.


They opened last season with four straight wins before losing to Zachary 36-21. The Saints followed that up with three straights wins, which included district rivals Baker and Glen Oaks. The North DeSoto lose came after loses to Parkview Baptist and East Feliciana, who are not in their district this year.

The Saints will still see the Tigers in their first regular season game.

“We started out good last season, but it hurt us when bigger teams like Zachary and Parkview came. I think we have to work on not shutting down when we lose one,” said senior defensive end Logan Biggs.

He said he and his fellow linemen have been working together after practice on technique and form.


Senior running back Trè Bailey said they have to take it one game at a time, since they will still be playing against bigger schools. Parkview Baptist will be the Saints last regular season game.

“We spent the summer in the weight room and linemen and running backs have been helping each other a lot with our form and blocking,” Bailey said.

Senior tight end and linebacker Tevin Johnson said he is hoping for a good season after being sidelined last year with a torn ACL.

“We only had four seniors last year, so almost everyone is back. We are healthier and deeper this year,” Johnson said.

Johnson said he began light jogging, then moved to stadiums early in the summer and hopes to make an impact.

“We have Port Allen and University High in our district now, so it will be a real test against both of those teams. We’ve all been pushing each other and this will be a good season,” Johnson said.

“I think to get farther into the playoffs, we just need to execute better, have some good fortune and stay injury free,” Odom said. “We’re just staying focused on the next game coming up on the schedule.”

The Saints first regular season district game will be against Port Allen on Sept. 27.

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August 25, 2013 at 6:34 pm

Wildcats Fighting for District Championship

Above: Silliman seniors; top (l-r) Ryan Armstrong-offensive line, Bucky Hornsby-defensive line, Todd Bourgeois-running back/free safety, Tyler Boyd-strong safety, Clay Reynolds-defensive tackle bottom-Daniel Myers-kicker, Collen McDowell-wide reciever/cornerback, Tabary Cucullu-wide receiver/corner back, Smith Marquell-fullback, John Gill-defensive tackle

Above: Silliman seniors; top (l-r) Ryan Armstrong-offensive line, Bucky Hornsby-defensive line, Todd Bourgeois-running back/free safety, Tyler Boyd-strong safety, Clay Reynolds-defensive tackle
bottom-Daniel Myers-kicker, Collen McDowell-wide reciever/cornerback, Tabary Cucullu-wide receiver/corner back, Smith Marquell-fullback, John Gill-defensive tackle

Silliman football coach T.J. Davis said he’s looking for steady improvement from his players this year.

“We’ve had two first round losses in the last two years, so our goal right now is to get past that first round,” Davis said.

The Wildcats ended last season at 6-5 with a 27-12 loss to Trinity Episcopal Day School (Natchez, Miss.) in the first round of the Mississippi Private School Association district playoffs.

They began last season with a loss to Brookhaven Academy, then had three straight district wins before losing to Centreville Academy and Trinity Episcopal Day.

“We had a talented team, but they didn’t gel like I thought they should have,” Davis said.

Many returning players echoed their coach.

Senior corner back and wide receiver Tabary Cucullu said they worked really hard as a team over the summer.

“Coach had us running a lot and we did a lot of seven-on-seven drills to make sure we are playing as one unit and really got to know our plays,” said Cucullu.

“I felt like I got a lot of help from the seniors last year,” said junior defensive end Jordan Talley.

He ended the season with 107 tackles overall, 17 sacks and 26 tackles for a loss, according to Talley.

He said he spent most of his summer in the weight room with his teammates, trying to get stronger.

Going into the season, Talley said he feels he still needs to improve his tackling technique and for the team to come together.

“As a team we’re there physically but not really all there mentally and need to gel and come together. I think we’re definitely getting there.”

Senior wide receiver and corner back Collen McDowell said summer football camps helped him.

“Last season, I feel like mentally I hit a wall as far as picking up on plays and different techniques,” McDowell said.

He said he learned how to cover people better and loosen up.

“I was really over thinking a lot of stuff last year,” he said.

Senior running back Todd Bourgeouis said spent the summer doing some make-up work after missing two games because of a concussion.

He said his time at the Manning Passing Academy helped him improve on his footwork in the backfield.

Junior lineman Jozie Milton said the team is focused on a state championship this year. He said the team practices have brought them together more.

“If somebody messed up, we used to just jump on him and yell at him. Now we make sure they understand where they were supposed to be and make sure they get it right next time,” Milton said.

Milton said he finished last season with 97 tackles, 7 sacks and 4 fumble recoveries and said he and Jordan Talley will kind of compete to see who gets the most tackles.

“Our guys really bought into our off season program and had some terrific gains in the weight room as far as amount of weight they were pushing, the distances they were running, said Davis. “This season’s schedule is going to get steadily harder, but we’re conditioned and ready for a full season of football.”

Their first regular will be against Oak Forest Academy on Aug. 23.

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August 25, 2013 at 6:25 pm

Broncos Look To Expand On Last Season’s Success

By Vanessa C. Deggins

Zachary football coach Neil Weiner said he was pleased with his players’ effort last year but would like to see his Broncos make it past the first round of the playoffs despite a challenging 2013-2014 schedule.

Weiner described last season as up and down and said his players came home with some big wins but came up short in the playoffs after getting “pushed around on defense a bit” by Acadiana High School, who beat them 63-42 in the 5A, District 4 playoffs.

The Broncos finished last season at 6-5. During the season, they handed Dutchtown its first regular season loss since 2009 and beat East Feliciana in overtime.

“I believe the key will be us being bigger, faster and stronger,” said Weiner. “This summer, we had the players focusing on speed more than in the past few years and working really hard in the weight room.”
Junior quarterback Keon Brown shared his coach’s sentiments.

“My only goal for the season really is to help the team get past the first round of playoffs,” Brown said.

This will be his first year starting at quarterback, so Brown said he spent his summer honing the fundamentals of his position, such as reading defense and throwing accuracy.

Senior offensive lineman Terry Minor has played all four years, but this will be his first year as a starter. He said he and his teammates having been working to fix the mental breakdowns he saw during the end of the season.

“Compared to last year, there’s a big difference in atmosphere at practice. We’ve all been making sure we are in shape and I feel like I’m ready to lead this year.”

Minor said he thinks the scrimmage against West Monroe and the jamboree game against West Feliciana will be a good way to see how quickly he and his teammates can adjust to different teams strategies.

Senior running back and free safety Forrest Town said the Broncos also need to focus on consistency.

“We definitely played well as a team last year, but I think we became a bit lackadaisical toward the end of the season and lost a couple of games we should have won,” Town said.

Town said he thinks staying consistent deep into the season will help them when going into the playoffs.

Along with getting stronger, Town said he and the defense have been working on better recognizing offensive plays.

“We have a lot of new starters who are adjusting to game speed, so we have been focusing on fundamentals and trying to get them mentally prepared,” Weiner said. “Our first regular season game is against Byrd (Shreveport, La.). They’re a Top 10 school, so they really have all of our focus now.”

The Broncos with play Byrd High School on Sept. 6 in Shreveport.

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August 25, 2013 at 6:16 pm

2012 Zachary Post Pigskin Preview

I included only photos I shot and edited
West Feliciana High School

West Feliciana High School Football Team 2012 seniors

After a year of rebuilding, the West Feliciana Saints have come back stronger and more mature, says head coach Robb Odom.
“We lost 25 seniors after the 2010 season so we had to play a lot of young guys and I thought we had a pretty successful year,” Odom said. “We made some mistakes because of immaturity, but I’m expecting good things from the players this season.”
He said being a year older has made a difference and that a lot of the players took it upon themselves to workout and get stronger during the off season.
The Saints finished the 2011 season with a 5-6 record and with a Class 3A first round playoff loss against Loranger.
Odom said the goal is to get back to the playoffs, but go farther than the first round.
“Our goal (this year) is not just to make the playoffs, but be playing in November. If you’re playing in November, then you’re doing good things,” Odom said.
In spring practice, the focus has been fundamentals, Odom said.
“The little things in football and life are what make you successful. You take care of the little things and the big things take care of themselves,” Odom said. “If you can’t tackle, can’t block, get down in a proper stance, you’re not going to be very successful.”
After working on technique, Odom said he then had his players focus on learning plays.
“We threw a lot on their plates early to see what they can and can’t handle,” Odom.
The players shared Odom’s philosophy of maturity and technique being the key to a successful season.
“So far, we’ve been conditioning pretty hard and in our scrimmages, the focus has been to make sure we execute the plays,” said senior lineman Trey Cazabatt.
For running back and defensive back, Deldrick Harris, he said learning patience was key for him.
“I learned patience in the losing games (last year). This also pushed me to work hard this summer and be ready,” Harris said.
He will also be playing offensive line this year and said he feels he’s gotten stronger and will do well at the position.
“We see each game as a step forward to the playoffs,” said offensive and defensive lineman Josh Robinson.
“We were a small, but strong line last year, so we spent the off-season focusing on mastering plays.”
Quarterback and defensive back Dennis Bell said last year’s season helped to form the collective mindset of improvement.
“I think we came together as a team because of those (2011) games and once we started to work together more, that’s when we started to play much better,” Bell said.
“I’ll mainly be looking at how my guys compete, who gets after it,” Odom said. “We’ve worked out the kinks and they have what it takes to be successful.”
The Saints have had scrimmages with Plaquemine and Patterson high schools and played a jamboree game against Denham Springs. Their first regular season game will be against the Tioga Indians at home on Aug. 31.

Zachary High School

Zachary High School football coach Neil Weiner talks to players during practice.

For the Zachary Broncos football team, players are banking on individual improvements coming together for a successful 2012 season.
Senior offensive lineman Christopher Taylor spent the off-season improving his speed. along with working on drills, he went to college conditioning camps and spent extra time in the weight room on his own.
Taylor is also looking to see how the Broncos’ defense will do against Catholic High School, the first game of the season.
“They made some big changes, so I want to see how well they do. On offense, I think we have really clicked and I can’t wait to see it in action,” Taylor said.
For senior running back, Boston Scott, he said he felt his biggest obstacle was break away speed.
“I spent a lot of time during the off season working on plyometrics,” Scott said.
Plyometrics, or jump drills, build muscle and help explosiveness.
Scott said being a starter this season is also extra motivation.
Head coach Neil Weiner said he has high expectations this season, despite losing 32 seniors.
“I have always stressed character and leadership, doing the right things and holding each other accountable,” Weiner said. “These are our number one priority.”
The Broncos finished the 2011 season 7-4 with a loss against Acadiana.
Weiner said most of the younger players had rotated through to play in other games, so “they are not totally new to the system.”
“We have a few new spots to fill, but the guys have been great through spring practice,” Weiner said.
“This will be Trey Hills’ first year starting and he’s done a good job of learning as much as possible. Grant VonRosenberg is starting (at center). It will be new for him but I think he’s ready,” Weiner said.
Other players spent their off season getting stronger.
“This summer I wanted to get bigger, faster and stronger, but mostly stronger, said senior corneback Nick Maxey.
He said he lifted at school and worked with weight lifting coach Gayle Hatch. This led to Maxey competing in the Junior Olympics in Texas and taking gold in the 62 kg, age 16-17 group.
The Broncos held a scrimmage against West Monroe and their first regular season game will be against Catholic High Bears on Aug. 31.

East Feliciana

East Feliciana High School 2012 Football Team and Coaching Staff

East Feliciana High Head Coach Craig Anderson said last year was kind of a rebuilding season and he expects his players to get back to 2010 form when they finished 12-1.
“Last season went pretty good even though we finished 5-5. We moved from 2A to 3A and had lost a good group of seniors,” Anderson said. “The guys are better this year and for the most part, I want them to just have fun and play football.”
Senior quarterback Kendell Beckwith said he spent the summer trying to get more accurate with his throws and improved his defensive skills since he will be playing linebacker as well.
Last year, he passed for more than 800 yards and had seven passing touchdowns.
Anderson said he expects Beckwith to also settle into his role as a leader on the team.
Beckwith said he is optimistic about the 2012 season after an Aug. 17 scrimmage with St. Helena High School.
Junior wide receiver Danny Johnson said he spent the summer hitting the weights and on the field working on his play routes.
“I think one thing we have focused on going into this season is working together better,” Johnson said.
He said the scrimmage with St. Helena showed that he and the players need to make sure they are capitalizing on a lead.
“Once we are ahead, we need to make sure we keep that momentum going,” Johnson said.
In the first game against Northeast on Aug. 31 Johnson said he hopes to do better catching the ball and breaking tackles.
Senior wide receiver said Corey Hawkins last season was motivation to work harder.
“The scrimmage showed me I need to improve on my route running and I need to practice the plays more,” he said.
Hawkins said he’s hoping to dominate against the Northeast Vikings, whom they beat 41-0 last year.
Senior running back and cornerback Ladarius Jackson said he and other seniors got together during the off season to train together.
“This is our senior year, we want to play hard and go out and have fun,” Jackson said.

August 13, 2012 at 12:28 am