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ESJ opens district with win over previously-unbeaten Trojans

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  • Game Recap
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  • RPF Staff
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  • September 22, 2018 - 9:07am

File photosEast St. John got Hoxie Brown in the offense as the Wildcats tight end caught a touchdown pass in ESJ's district-opening win over Central Lafourche on Friday.

Taking on a team that had gotten off to a 3-0 start and had aspirations of a District 7-5A contender, East St. John would seem to need an all-around effort to defeat Central Lafourche on Friday night in Mathews.

The Wildcats pretty much got it. East St. John produced two rushing touchdowns, three scores via the air and added an interception for a score. A harassing ESJ defense also tossed a shutout as the Wildcats (2-2 overall, 1-0 in district) opened district play with a 31-0 victory of the Trojans (3-1 overall, 0-1 in district).

“We’ve been getting closer and closer to playing a complete game. I went out and challenged those guys to, ‘let’s start district off on a good note. Let’s go out and play a complete game on offense, defense and special teams,’” East St. John coach Brandon Brown said.

Central’s 3-0 start matched its win total of all of 2017 and hopes were high for the Trojans after losing four games by seven points or less and another by eight points.

“Our kids understood what was at stake. We were playing a very good Central Lafourche team. We wanted to let people know that we belong. We just wanted to get off to a fast start and let everyone know we do belong in the conversation in Class 5A,” said Brown.

Quarterback Sean Shelby, who tossed for slightly less than 300 yards, hooked up with Pershing Toney for one of the scores.

“Sean is doing an excellent job for us. We knew from film study that it was going to be tough to run the football on them with that 3-3 Stack and the confusion they try to create up front. We told Sean he would have to have a good game. He stepped up and did a great job,” Brown said.

The Wildcats also managed to get Hoxie Brown a bit more involved in the offense as the tight end also caught a scoring touchdown.

“He got our first touchdown and then they started kind of keying on him and that opened up things on the outside. We need to continue to spread the ball around. As long as Sean continues to throw the ball well to open up our running game, we are going to be there for the rest of the season,” said Brown.

One of the guys out the outside, Dontae Fleming, topped 100 yards in receptions.

Toney, Calvin Gardner Jr. and Jeremy Wells provided the scoring on the ground.

The defense added a score of its own when Jarius Monroe returned an interception 85 yards with less than six minutes remaining in the contest.

“Jarius has been doing a great job all year. He’s a good cover guy for us. We told the guy at halftime that we tried to make (the Trojans) one dimensional. We knew they could run the football and had a real good running back, so we came in looking to stop the run. We brought a lot of pressure to win first down and put them in second-and-long situations. We had some run blitzes set up. It worked for us and it kind of forced them to throw the football,” Brown said.

St. John’s defense held Central Lafourche to less than 200 yards of total offense and picked off two Jacob Barker passes.

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