Destrehan denied rival Hahnville an outright District 7-5A championship with a 23-21 win over the visiting Tigers on Friday night.
The loss dropped Hahnville to 5-1 in district and 8-2 overall. The loss, the second in a row for Hahnville to close the regular season, coupled with East St. John’s 21-14 win over Thibodaux, caused the Tigers and ESJ to share the league title. Hahnville defeated East St. John 14-0 earlier in the season.
Destrehan, the winner of four straight, ended the regular season 7-3 overall and 4-2 in district play.
Both Hahnville and Destrehan will find out their postseason matchups when the playoff brackets are announced Sunday.
That set up a 1-yard touchdown run by Darryle Evans to put Hahnville on top 14-10 with 8:13 left in the third quarter.
The Wildcats responded when a pass interference call against Hahnville, coupled with a personal-foul penalty against the Tigers, set up an easy slant route for Quincy Brown from Destrehan quarterback Damaruis Jackson as the Wildcats would regain the lead at 16-14 with 4:34 left in the third quarter.
It was the second touchdown of the game for Brown, who finished with seven catches for 75 yards and two scores.
“We had some advantages in the passing game and we felt like we could get to the quarterback by sending pressure,” said Destrehan coach Stephen Robicheaux.
Destrehan managed to get a bit of separation when Hahnville running back Trey Labranch was unable to handle a pitch on an option play from quarterback Drew Naquin, setting up the Wildcats at the HHS 28 following Jhase Gooden’s recovery.
Following an 11-yard reception by Brown, running back Kyle Edwards, the Alabama commitment, bounced off of several would-be tacklers on his way to the end zone for a 17-yard touchdown run that extended Destrehan’s lead to 24-13 with 1:10 left in the third quarter.
“You can’t turn the ball over against good teams and expect to win,” said Hahnville coach Nick Saltaformaggio.
Hahnville narrowed the gap to 23-21 on a 21-yard touchdown pass from Naquin to Dakota Williams.
The Tigers got the ball back for one last chance but went backward on the drive. Kelvin Lea came up with a couple of sacks to open and close Hahnville’s attempt at a rally. Hahnville also suffered a holding penalty and a pass breakup that Tiger partisans thought was pass interference.
“I thought it was interference. I thought it was clearly pass interference but they didn’t see it that way,” said Saltaformaggio.
The Destrehan defense was led by linebacker Dylan Whitted, who had 3.5 sacks.
Hahnville came up with the game’s first score two plays into the second quarter on a 34-yard run by Evans.
Destrehan responded quickly when a kick return by Edwards to the Hahnville 44 set up a 20-yard touchdown pass from Jackson to Brown three plays later to tie the game.
A 34-yard field goal by Will Bryant enabled Destrehan to take a 10-7 lead at halftime.