For the first time in years, the Hahnville Tigers didn’t hold an annual game to end the spring. But the coaches still got a chance to get players on film for evaluation purposes in a full-contact scrimmage on Monday.
Tiger head coach Lou Valdin said one thing stood out above all others – his team’s tough attitude.
“Even young kids didn’t shy away from contact,” he said. “I think that has to do with the fact that we have so many open positions. Kids are fighting for spots.”
New rules put into affect this year limited the number of days team’s could practice in the spring while also forbidding football teams from going against another high school in a spring game. That forced the Tigers to scrimmage against themselves for about an hour in their final allowed practice.
“We just wanted to get everybody on film and get the backups in against the first teamers,” Valdin said. “This was just for evaluation purposes.”
Overall, the game was a little sloppy, but that’s to be expected from a team having to replace so many starters. On the offensive side, Hahnville is working in quarterback Easton Melancon who has a host of new receivers.
The result was several dropped passes and miscommunication between the center and quarterback.
“We were pretty sloppy in the little things…dropping passes, dropping snaps,” Valdin said. “That has nothing to do with how many days you practice. That’s something you should pick up in the first couple of days.”
Though several of his passes were dropped, Melancon did a good job of getting the ball to his receivers.
“Our quarterback made good decisions under stress,” Valdin said. “He held on to the ball and made something happen and didn’t throw any errant passes.”
Another bright spot was the running game, which returns a few players who saw action last year. Mike Ford broke through for a long touchdown run in the game, while Travis Faucheaux had some big gains down the sideline. Ernest Thompson showed his quickness by getting positive yards up the middle.
“We ran the ball well and all of our backs looked good,” Valdin said. “That will be an area of depth for us next season.”
Defensively, Hahnville played well though Valdin was disappointed that the offense was able to run the ball so successfully against his unit. But he did say that the defense was at a disadvantage before the first snap.
“This late in spring when we are just playing one defense, the offense starts to figure it out and knows which plays are going to beat it,” he said.
With spring officially over, Valdin was pleased with the amount of work his squad was able to get in in such a short amount of time.
“We were able to do a good job of evaluating our players and now we know who can play and who can’t,” Valdin said. “We have guys in the right spot, know where we have depth and we know what to work on.
“Now we can spend the summer coaching up the ones that we know are going to be Friday night guys.”
Valdin also feels that his current squad is a little stronger and a little tougher than last year’s team.
“I thought we were very physical all spring,” he said. “We hit good on both sides of the ball and we are going to have good speed and strength.”