Destrehan’s best offensive performance of the season wasn’t enough to get them past Hahnville last week, as the Wildcats saw their playoff hopes die and their season come to an end with a 47-44 loss in overtime.
Destrehan scored 20 points in the first quarter to set the stage for the shootout. Wildcat junior quarterback Donovan Isom was nearly perfect in that quarter, connecting with Rickey Jefferson for a 37-yard score and finding Derrick McGee for a 40-yard touchdown less than two minutes later to give Destrehan a 14-0 lead with 8:38 still to play in the opening quarter.
The Wildcats turned a Hahnville fumble into another score when Isom rumbled 26 yards to put his team on top 20-7.
Destrehan held a 27-13 lead at halftime, but the Tigers stormed back in the third quarter to take a 34-27 advantage. Both teams went toe-to-toe for the rest of the contest, with the Wildcats tying the game at 41-41 after turning a Hahnville fumble into another touchdown near the end of the fourth quarter.
In overtime, Destrehan took a 44-41 lead on a 30-yard field goal by Cameron Walsh, but the Tigers made the most of their overtime series with running back Sergio Medina picking up the winning score on a 1-yard plunge on fourth down.
Despite the loss, Destrehan head coach Stephen Robicheaux said he was extremely proud of his squad’s performance.
"Our kids came out excited and played really well," he said. "I think Hahnville was a little bit better team, but our kids fought hard. The excitement was there and our kids got into it."
Robicheaux said that the loss to Hahnville was one of the most exciting games he has ever been a part of.
"There was a heck of a crowd and the kids put on a show. You couldn’t have asked for a better football game," he said. "The bottom line is that both teams played hard and both teams played to the finish. It came down to a 4th and 1 play from the goal line and that’s how games should be played."
While Destrehan’s football season is over, there is already a lot of excitement surrounding next year’s squad. Isom, who threw for 305 yards and scored four touchdowns against Hahnville, will return to lead the offense in 2013. Linebacker RaeJuan Marbley, who led the Wildcats in tackles and is already drawing interest from major colleges around the country, will also return.
Destrehan also started six sophomores on offense this year and five on defense.
"Our sophomores were some of our more productive kids this year, so the future really looks bright," Robicheaux said.
One of Robicheaux’s main goals entering the season was to bring excitement back to the Destrehan football program. The Wildcats won two state titles under Robicheaux in 2007 and 2008, but when he resigned from the program Destrehan won only five games in two years.
"During the season I told the kids that it wasn’t all about wins and losses, but it was about getting the program back on track," Robicheaux said. "I think we took a big step towards that this season. Of course I’m disappointed because I would rather be coaching right now than playing golf, but if the kids keep doing the things we ask of them there will be good times ahead in the future."
|Destrehan quarterback Donovan Isom is one of the many key Wildcat players who will return next year.|