A bigger, more physical East Ascension squad managed to control the line of scrimmage and the clock to take a 21-2 victory last Friday that handed St. Charles Catholic its first loss of the season.
“They were big and physical. We didn’t block them at the line of scrimmage,” Comets coach Frank Monica said. “We tried to win the game by throwing the football when we got behind and we’re not equipped for that right now. We are a run, play-action, ball control team passing game and we weren’t able to get in a flow at all with our offense.
“Defensively, we gave ourselves a chance. In the second half, we created some turnovers but we had missed opportunities in the red zone. They were a good football team and we didn’t handle the moment very well.”
The Comets (4-1) look to get back on the winning side when they open District 10-3A play and travel to take on Lusher at 7 p.m. Friday in New Orleans.
Lusher (3-2, 0-1 in district) already has a league game under its belt, coming off a 44-0 loss to Newman.
The Lions are based out of an ‘I’ formation with two backs and a tight end, according to Monica.
“Their offense is similar to ours. They are downhill, power and they run stretch. They control the ball on you if you are not ready to play,” the St. Charles coach said.
Although based out of the ‘I’ formation, the Lions also will switch to a four wide receiver look.
Lusher had to replace quarterback Eli Poche, who passed for more than 2,500 yards and 30 touchdowns.
The Lions are utilizing two players at quarterback this season in 6-foot-4 sophomore Sam Kates and 5-foot-9 freshman Arnold Little.
Regardless of the quarterback, the ball generally is going to senior running back Ari Broussard, a 6-foot, 215 pounder, who also plays middle linebacker.
“When he comes downhill, he packs a load. We have to get some people around him and tackle him low,” Monica said of Broussard.
The Lions feature a veteran offensive line with five returning starters in Samuel Davis, Tamir Bryant, Sydney Cazeno, Deven Johnson and Brandon Preuss.
Lusher features an opportunistic defense, according to Monica.
They are even front team. They will be in multiple sets. They play some man. The thing that jumps out on the tape is that they have created numerous turnovers. We must have seen 12, 14 turnovers. They even had three last week against Newman,” Monica said.
Bryant, who also plays defensive tackle, is the Lions’ top player on defense, according to Monica.
“He’s very physical. He goes upfield. He tries to dominate the guard that he plays over,” Monica said.
Another top defender is linebacker Jorren Butler.
While Friday’s game against Lusher is the start of league play for St. Charles, the encounter represents more than just a district game, according to Monica.
“We emphasize that it is the start of district play and there is such a thing as a district championship. But the big emphasis for us is we have to play Comet football. We have to get our swagger back,” the St. Charles coach said.10-3