After capping off his senior season with a legendary playoff run, it's no surprise that Hahnville senior running back Anthony “Pooka” Williams has been named the Riverparishfootball.com Offensive Player of the Year.
“It's a blessing,” said Williams. “I put in the work, our team put in the work and I came out with another blessing.”
Williams rushed for just over 3,100 yards in his senior season alone over 1,300 yards of which came in the playoffs where he led Hahnville to their first State Championship appearance in 14 years.
“The playoffs this year were incredible. But I couldn't have done anything if it wasn't for my (offensive) line and the coaches feeding me the ball,” said Williams.
“He certainly was our identity. He was what we were, as Pooka went, we went,” said Hahnville Offensive Coordinator Mike Silva. “The quarterback (Jha'quan Jackson) had a good year but Pooka was the man. The thing we had to do with Pooka was we went from the previous year trying to find ways to get him the ball to where this year if we put him back in the backfield it was real easy to get him the ball in many different ways handing it to him, flipping it to him, it just made it easier to put the ball in his hand as much as possible.”
The award was presented by Cintas General Manager Jerry Matherne who has been a sponsor of Riverparishfootball.com for several years.
“It's a great privilege for us to be able to participate and support high school athletics here in the river parishes,” said Matherne. “Our company has serviced business in the river parishes for over 35 years. It's great to be a part of this.”
Williams signed a letter of commitment to Kansas during the early signing period and a recent visit only solidified his decision.
“I visited Kansas this past weekend and it was still incredible. It still feels like home,” said Williams who was named the Riverparishfootball.com Athlete of the Year in 2016.
Asked what stands out about his high school career, Williams quickly pointed to beating rival Destrehan 20-13 this season when he rushed for 226 yards and two touchdowns.
“I will always remember the Battle of the River,” said Williams. “When it's my time to have kids, I'll tell my kids about that game.”
Previous winners of RPF.com Offensive Player of the Year
2010- D’haquille Williams WR East St. John
2011- Darion Monroe QB East St. John
2012- Ruston Matherne QB Lutcher
2013- Donovan Isom QB Destrehan
2014- Will Matthews RB Destrehan
2015- Jontre Kirklin QB Lutcher
2016- Jontre Kirklin QB Lutcher
*All trophies for Riverparishfootball.com came from Faber Awards. Since 1972, Faber Awards has been helping schools, churches, businesses and individuals recognize the best of the best in the greater New Orleans area. Located at 9127 Airline Highway in New Orleans, call Faber Awards at 504-821-5711.