Hahnville’s playoff hopes on line against South Lafourche
Hahnville running back Lynn Simmons led the Tigers offense in rushing yards and had an electrifying 84-yard touchdown reception.
Coming off an upset loss against Central Lafourche (4-5, 2-4) last week in Lockport, the Hahnville Tigers (4-5, 3-3) still have a chance at the playoffs under the new playoff system introduced this year in which private schools play in their own bracket.
Hahnville head coach Lou Valdin said there is a possibility that even if his team loses their final game against the South Lafourche Tarpons, they will enter the playoffs. “If we win, we are in. If we lose, we are probably still in,” he said.
Given that this is the first year that private schools will not participate in the same playoff bracket as public schools, Valdin said the Tigers moved up in the power ratings when the private schools were removed.
“You’ve got to take 10 teams out of (the power ratings),” he said.
With private schools removed, the Tigers are currently ranked No. 27 out of 52 class 5A teams statewide and 32 of those teams will move on to the playoffs.To be ensured a playoff berth, Hahnville will have to bounce back from last Friday’s showing in which they controlled much of the game, but gave up a go-ahead touchdown in the last minute for the second time this season.
In the series before the Trojans scored the wining touchdown, Hahnville was driving and had the ball with a first down on the one-yard line, but a holding call brought back a touchdown that would have put them ahead by 10 points with a little over two minutes remaining. Three plays later, Hahnville missed a field goal and turned the ball over to Central Lafourche for their game-wining drive.
“I thought we were the better football team than them. We just blew opportunities,” Valdin said. “You get down there and you have a holding call at first and goal at the one and then you miss a field goal. We had ample opportunities to win the game and we didn’t do that.”
Despite the nature of the loss, Valdin said he is not dwelling on last week’s game.
“We are going to look at the film and correct mistakes and get ready for South Lafourche,” he said.
Coming into the South Lafourche game, Valdin said his team will have to eliminate mistakes if they expect to pull out the victory. South Lafourche is known for lining up in unique formations and shifting numerous players before running offensive plays.
“The deal for us is going to be lining up right,” he said. “That’s what happened against Central Lafourche. We had some blown assignments.”
On offense, the Tarpons like to run behind 6-foot-7, 320-pound offensive lineman Bailey Granier, who has already committed to Vanderbilt University.
“He is probably about the best offensive lineman in the district,” Valdin said.
In their skilled positions, Valdin said the Tarpons have a good running game led by their quarterback and two running backs.
“Central Lafourche ran the ball right at us and I imagine that is what we are going to be looking at (from South Lafourche),” he said.
On defense, Valdin said he expects the Tarpons to try and take away Hahnville’s rushing attack.
“Everyone is going to try and take away our running game. Central knew it is no secret - You put nine in the box and make us throw. East St. John did that and (Central) did it,” he said.
With quarterback Dylan Keller returning to lead the offense after dealing with a shoulder injury for much of the season, the Tigers may have the potential to run on the perimeter and create mismatches for the Tarpons defense.
In addition, running back Todge Scott, who has been recovering from a sprained ankle and only took a few snaps last week, should be 100 percent by game time.
Given that Friday’s match up is the last home game of the season, Valdin said he would like to send his seniors out with a win.
“We just want to finish out our schedule with a win at home. It is senior salute so we would like those guys to win their last guaranteed game at Tiger Stadium,” he said. Kickoff for the game is scheduled for 7 p.m.
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