DHS linebacker, HHS defensive lineman shine in all-star game
On paper the River Region All-Star football team looked like a touchdown favorite to beat the Bayou Region All-Stars, but that is why all-star games are always unpredictable.
Led by Thibodaux High School running back Joshua Johnson, who rushed for 109 yards and a touchdown on 18 carries, the Bayou All-Stars upset the River Region All-Stars 30-21 in the HTV-10/Lions Club All-Star showdown.
Johnson was the Bayou Region MVP, and along with E.D. White Catholic High School running back Dylan Ledet who scored two touchdowns, led the offensive charge during the contest at John L. Guidry Stadium on the campus of Nicholls State University Friday night.
The Bayou All-Stars took a 10-0 lead into halftime due to a 31-yard touchdown run by Johnson and a 30-yard field goal by placekicker Michael Blanchard from Vandebilt Catholic High School.
In the second half, River Region head coach Chris Stroud threw the offensive saddle around one of the elite football players in the state of Louisiana.
In the second half wide receiver Dhaquille Williams from East St. John High School set a new HTV-10/Lions Club All-Star football game record by catching nine passes for 171 yards and a touchdown.
Williams set the pace for a ferocious finish to the contest as the River Region started to get some real football traction in the second half. But Williams, who is one of the most impressive high school football players I have seen in my 27 years of sports reporting, was not the only signature offensive player for the River Region.
East St. John High School halfback Andrew Taylor rushed for 97 yards on 13 carries and Destrehan High School running back/linebacker Tarquin Kenner rushed for 63 yards on 10 carries.
Kenner, a 5-10, 235-pound Wildcat linebacker, racked up 74 total tackles, four tackles for losses, a quarterback sack and he recovered four fumbles for Destrehan on defense in 2010, but his short-yardage presence and tough inside running skills just may have caught the eyes of college coaches viewing this contest.
South Lafourche High School linebacker Justin Lasseigne, who led the Bayou All-Stars in tackles with 10, said that Kenner was a really tough runner to bring down in the open field.
“Tarquin (Kenner) is a real physical guy to bring down one-on-one,” Lasseigne said. “We knew he was a real smart and aggressive defensive player, but he really impressed me with his power and his quick feet for such a big runner. That guy is a load to bring down. You just can’t wrap him up well because of his stocky build and he is constantly keeping his legs churning.”
Hahnville star defensive lineman Jontrell Lockett also had a good game. Lockett recorded four tackles and two tackles for losses in the all-star showdown.
West St. John High School quarterback Mark Wright completed 9 of his 14 throws for 122 yards and two touchdowns and he was voted the River Region MVP for his efforts.
St. Charles Catholic High School tight end Harley Scioneau caught a 13-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter and he also impressed the coaches from both sides due to his excellent athletic skills and sure hands during the game and in the practice sessions.
The game-changing play for the Bayou Region was a strip and recovered fumble on a kickoff by Terrebonne High School defensive back Craig Nelson. At that point the score was 24-21 with 2:54 left in the fourth quarter and momentum swinging heavily toward the River Region.
Five plays later Dylan Ledet, who is being pursued by Dartmouth, Cornell and Nicholls State, found the endzone for the second time in the fourth quarter to seal the victory for the Bayou All-Stars.
East St. John’s Floyd Raven, who is considered one of the premier defensive backs in the state of Louisiana, announced last week that he is joining Destrehan offensive lineman Ethan Hutson by verbally committing to play football for Ole Miss in 2011.
Johnson Named to the 2010 Associated Press All-American Team
Former Destrehan High School standout Damaris Johnson continues to catch the attention of sports writers across the country. The nation’s leader for all-purpose yards last season and again in 2010 was named to the 2010 Associated Press All-American second team squad as an all-purpose performer.
The Tulsa University star performer led the nation for the second straight year in all-purpose yards with an average of 191.8 yards per game average in 2010.
Johnson and Tulsa will play Hawaii on December 24th in the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl game and he needs just 103 yards of all-purpose yards to tie former Memphis running back DeAngelo Williams for third place all-time and 294 yards to tie the NCAA all-time record set by Western Michigan’s Brandon West.
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