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St. Charles playing ‘Comet’ football going into game with Haynes

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  • George Becnel
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  • October 17, 2018 - 2:24pm

Photos by Jarrod MonaretFrank Monica's St. Charles Catholic Comets can move to 3-0 in District 10-3A play Friday night with a win over visiting Haynes Academy.


St. Charles Catholic has gotten back to playing “Comet” football as SCC has surged above .500, including 2-0 in District 10-3A play following last week’s 21-6 road win over Donaldsonville.

The St. Charles offense rushed for 268 yards, with Keenan Gauff rushing for 103 yards and Phillip Tran with 102.

“We had two kids over 100 yards, which we were pleased to see. I don’t know the last time we did that,” St. Charles coach Frank Monica said. “They (the Tigers) were very quick defensively and we felt like we had to try to run the ball and keep the ball on the ground because they were very athletic in the secondary.”

The Comets (4-3 overall, 2-0 in district) look to make it to 3-0 in district play when they host Haynes Academy (1-5 overall, 0-2 in district) on Friday.

Haynes has struggled all season, including last week’s 43-7 loss to St. James.

The Yellow Jackets’ roster is still limited, although it boast approximately 40 players, which is up from the recent past.

Regardless of record, personnel or roster size of an opponent, the Comets need to play the same week-to-week, according to Monica.

“We have to get away from looking at the jersey you are playing against,” the St. Charles coach said. “If you are supposed to block the guy, block the guy. It doesn’t matter who you are blocking against.

“This is an emotional game – the sport of football. That lends itself to relaxing and if you relax, you get yourself injured because the other guy is trying to hit you, too. It’s important for us to play SCC-type football, not look at the jersey, and continue to execute.”

Haynes’ quarterback is Zach Bott. Top runners include Gavin Burns and Paul Longo Jr. One of Bott’s favorite targets is Josh Christoffersen, a 6-foot-2, 225-pound tight end. Thomas Gaffney, who is one of the team’s top receivers, also plays in the defensive secondary.

“Offensively, they like the two-back set and the play-action passes. They move to a one-back set. They like to get the ball on the perimeter on you. They can knock you off the ball,” Monica explained.

Defensively, the Yellow Jackets play both an even- and odd-man front.

“It’s kind of what we call a ‘shade front,’” Monica said.

Haynes has some size up front with 6-foot-4, 282-pound David Beach and 5-foot-10, 310-pound Brian Weindel.

Noah Dillings, at 5-foot-7, 170 pounds, is the team’s top linebacker.

“He’s not very big, but he’s very active,” Monica noted.

Gaffney is a leader in the secondary.

“He could play for anybody. He makes tackles in the open field and things like that,” Monica said.

Maintaining focus, Monica said, will be a key factor for the Comets on Friday night.

“For us, it’s Senior Night, so it’s important we keep the focus at hand. And, this is a district game and it counts. We are going to practice like we always do.”

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.