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East St. John looking for 2-0 district start with win over HLB

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  • George Becnel
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  • September 26, 2017 - 7:00am

File photosA win by Alden Foster's East St. John Wildcats over H.L. Bourgeois would improve the team to 2-0 in District 7-5A play headed into a showdown with Destrehan.

The East St. John Wildcats hope to close out a four-game home stand at Joe Keller Stadium with another win.

“Hopefully, we can go 3-1 in that home stretch. We were hoping to go 4-0. We are having our first big alumni tailgate and there will be a big crowd and we plan on giving them something to be proud of,” East St. John coach Alden Foster said.

The Wildcats (2-2 overall, 1-0 in District 7-5A) are coming off a 35-12 victory over Central Lafourche in which the passing game was clicking. Javon Antonio had eight catches for 146 yards and two touchdowns while Cameron Grant hauled in five passes for 78 yards and two touchdowns.

“It was good to see Javon get off and Dasmain (Crosby) had a game like he had last year. He looked like his old self. It was a welcome surprise. He ran the ball well and he threw the ball well. He made some good decisions. He was 17 of 22 but he had two or three drops so he almost had a perfect night,” said Foster.

The one drawback to the Central Lafourche game, according to Foster, was the Wildcats’ running game.

“We just have to get consistent all the way across the board because the passing game developed but the running game went backwards. Once we get more balance and more consistent I will feel a lot better about it,” the East St. John coach said.

Perhaps Crosby is peaking just in time for Friday’s game at H.L. Bourgeois. It was the game against the Braves a year ago that the then-sophomore made his first start at quarterback.

“What a difference a year makes. Hopefully, he can just take control of the game and whatever he does and just go from there,” Foster said of Crosby.

The Braves (1-3 overall, 0-1 in district) like to run the football, according to Foster.

“If you don’t play assignment football, it can cause you problems. They like to run the power read and some option stuff so you have to play assignment football. Our first year in 2015 (with Foster as head coach) we went down there and they made us look real bad running that power read. We didn’t know where the football was,” Foster recalled.

In the Braves’ 40-6 loss last week to Thibodaux, Cullen Nyssen started at quarterback. Alek Domangue played quarterback in the second half and led HLB to its only score. Connor Verdin played quarterback for the Braves earlier in the season.

“They have a few that they’ve tried so I don’t know who we will face but they don’t change their system. What they did they went to a power game toward the end (against Thibodaux) and snapped it directly to Anthony Ruffin and he was just running the ball,” said Foster.

One of the Braves’ top offensive threats is Terrell Barrow.

They move him around a lot and try to get him the ball in a lot of ways. We have to account for where he is at all times. They will throw it, but they want to run it. If you can’t stop the power read, everything else opens up for them,” Foster said.

The secondary is a strength for Braves, led by Kolby Starks.

“He’s the cornerback they like to single up,” Foster pointed out.

Another top defender in the secondary is Trevonte Walker.

The main guy up front is Lekelan Bougere.

“He’s a good-looking kid on film. He’s a big kid. We had trouble blocking Central Lafourche last week so this week we have to do a better job up front with our running game and be more physical because you won’t just be able to throw the ball every week on people,” said Foster.

So, what will it take for the Wildcats to get off to a 2-0 league start?

“We have to control the line of scrimmage on both sides to be 2-0 in district, which would be great heading into Destrehan,” Foster said.

George Becnel | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

George Becnel is an award-winning journalist and has been a sports writer and editor for more than 30 years.