A potential late go-ahead drive by Hahnville came up short at Hoss Memtsas Stadium Friday night as John Ehret captured a victory in a shootout, 46-41.
The Tigers (1-1) were unable to avenge their loss to the Patriots last postseason despite a dominant rushing effort keyed by Anthony Williams and Jha’Quan Jackson, who combined for six scores on the ground.
Both teams ran the ball extremely well, with Terrell Brown leading the way for the Patriots (1-1) with 133 yards and three touchdowns. After a defensive struggle through the first quarter and a half, both teams exploded offensively from there, the rest of the night filled with explosive plays from scrimmage and on special teams.
“They put us out of the playoffs last year … it was personal for me,” Hahnville coach Nick Saltaformaggio said. “Our kicking game let us down. You tell me I’d lose tonight because of our kicking game, I’d have called you a liar … I told them when the fourth-ranked team in the city plays the sixth-ranked team in the city, somebody’s going to walk out of here happy and somebody’s going to walk out of here sad. We’re walking out of here sad but we’ve got a lot of football left to play.”
With stops at a premium, it seemed the first team to hold the other defensively would be the victor. Hahnville came up with a big stop with just under five minutes left to play after a tackle for loss by Logan Robert and a sack by Adonis Friloux forced a Patriots punt, Hahnville trailing 46-41.
HHS drove to the John Ehret 39 with less than two minutes remaining and faced a fourth-and-one. Jackson ran up the middle on a quarterback keeper but found no running room, and Ehret took over on downs. The Patriots ran out the clock from there.
Ehret made two major plays in the return game in the second half, with Deron Coleman taking the opening kickoff of the second half back for six and later making a 70-yard return to set up another score.
“I thought we were gonna play well defensively, but you can’t give John Ehret 50 yard fields and we did,” Saltaformaggio said. “We tried to squib it and we kicked it off a player. We couldn’t do that again if we tried to.”
Williams finished with 185 yards on the ground and three touchdowns. Jackson rushed for 144 yards and three scores of his own.
Brown’s 9-yard touchdown run with 7:32 left in the fourth quarter proved the eventual winning points, putting Ehret ahead 46-34 at the time.