Road to the Dome: LHSAA Class 2A Second Round Preview
by Jace LeJeune, Cameron Cerniglia, and Lee Brecheen
16 teams are down and there are 16 more teams left to go. All 16 teams have their own strengths and weaknesses, but they all have one goal in mind. That is to be one of nine teams in the end holding a state championship trophy in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome with the Queen smash hit “We Are the Champions” playing in the background. For Louisiana football fans, this is the most wonderful time of the year. It is our version of “March Madness”. This year, we got you covered as for the next couple of weeks, we will go through all of the matchups from 1A all the way to 5A public and private each and every week leading up to the All-State Sugar Bowl/LHSAA Prep Classic from December 6th-8th. Louisiana Football Magazine’s expert Lee Brecheen has seen all of these teams play and gives his insight on which teams will survive and continue their march to the Superdome. Today, we preview the Class 2A public division second round playoff matchups.
#1 Many (10-1) vs. #16 Rayville (5-6)
Jace’s Game Preview: The Many Tigers showed that they are deserving of that number one seed ranking by blowing out Ville Platte 76-0 in their first round playoff game. With the rushing duo of Army commit Shacori Williams and Ni’Kendrick Carter as well as a dominant defense led by big time recruit Myron Warren, the Tigers look like the team to beat. However, the Rayville Hornets have something to say about it. The Hornets won their first round playoff game against North Caddo 27-15. The Hornets’ difference maker is their senior QB James Powell. For the Tigers, their biggest key is to control the tempo of the game and keep Powell on the bench. If the Tigers can play their style of football, they should be able to pull away.
Jace’s Pick: Many
Lee’s Pick: “This is going to be a tougher game than a lot of people think. I saw both teams play. Rayville has the athletes to play with Many, but it is just a matter of Many wearing Rayville down. If they don’t keep Rayville’s defense on the field, then Many is in trouble because Rayville’s quarterback James Powell is dangerous. I think this could be a really tough game for Many because I think this will be one of the toughest teams they play this season. I am still going to pick Many, but it is going to be closer than what people think.”
#8 Vidalia (8-3) vs. #24 Independence (4-7)
Jace’s Game Preview: The Vidalia Vikings, led by legendary Head Coach George “Dee” Faircloth, are coming off a great effort by their defensive unit in their first round playoff victory 26-0 against Oakdale. If you are a Viking fan, it is encouraging to get a dominant game from your defense knowing that the offense is capable of putting points up with senior QB Tristan Weatherly. The Independence Tigers, led by first year Head Coach Scott Shaffett, are trying to spoil the party once again after upsetting number nine seed Pine 36-32.
Jace’s Pick: Vidalia
Lee’s Pick: “I am pulling for Coach George “Dee” Faircloth to win. I like the defense and the senior leadership for Vidalia. Independence is young, but very athletic and Coach Shaffett has done an excellent coaching job. However, I have the Vikings winning this game.”
#5 Welsh (9-2) vs. #12 Mansfield (8-3)
Jace’s Game Preview: The defending Class 2A state champion Welsh Greyhounds showed last Friday night that they will be contending for another state championship this year by dominating West St. Mary 49-0 in the opening round. The Mansfield Wolverines survived a close game against the South Plaquemines Hurricanes with a final 16-14 score. For now, the Wolverines advance, but they must step up their game against the Greyhounds in order to pull the upset.
Jace’s Pick: Welsh
Lee’s Pick: “I am going with Welsh only because it is at their home stadium. Mansfield has a little bit more speed and talent than Welsh, but Welsh knows how to win in the playoffs and they are trying to get back to the Dome. They also have some veteran players back. Overall, this will be a close game.”
#4 Rosepine (11-0) vs. #20 DeQuincy (6-5)
Jace’s Game Preview: The Rosepine Eagles survived a first round upset by narrowly defeating the Port Allen Pelicans 20-14. It was not the Eagles’ best performance, but they found a way to win the ball game and continue their pursuit of an undefeated season as well as trying to make the quarterfinals for the first time in program history. The DeQuincy Tigers are another team that is looking to get the upset. After all, they not only upset higher seed East Beauregard in the first round, but they dominated the Trojans 25-0. The Tigers will be looking to try and do it again, but this time, they will have to stop a really good offensive backfield featuring QB Seth Ducote and RB Seth Shirley.
Jace’s Pick: Rosepine
Lee’s Pick: “Rosepine should win this game. DeQuincy won their first playoff game, but this one will be a little tougher to come by for them. This is Rosepine’s best team in a long time. I think they will win this one.”
#3 Ferriday (8-3) vs. #14 General Trass (8-3)
Cameron’s Game Preview: Both of these teams won convincingly in their first round matchups. Ferriday beat Vinton 54-0 and General Trass beat Lakeside 35-6. This game could be a shoot out and will be fun to watch.
Cameron’s Pick: Ferriday
Lee’s Pick: “Ferriday is a good team. I saw them play earlier this year. They just don’t return the two LSU signees last year, but still, they have a lot of talent. The skill talent is good as well as their linebacker Larry Scott. They have really good offensive and defensive lines as well. General Trass has some good players, but Ferriday is still one of the top programs in their class so I am going with Ferriday.”
#6 St. Helena College & Career Academy (9-2) vs. #22 Northeast (5-6)
Cameron’s Game Preview: St. Helena won their first round game against Delhi Charter by a score of 32-0. Northeast was able to pull the upset against Lake Arthur in the first round. The final score of that game was 12-8. It will be interesting to see if Northeast can keep the momentum going heading into the second round.
Cameron’s Pick: St. Helena
Lee’s Pick: “Northeast’ skill talent is good with their quarterback and their wide receivers. St. Helena has probably too much size for Northeast to handle and they can wear you out. This is not a good matchup for Northeast. They are good when it comes to skill vs. skill, but this is size against skill and because of that, I am going to go with St. Helena.”
#7 Kinder (7-4) vs. #23 Franklin (5-5)
Cameron’s Game Preview: Kinder heads into this matchup with Franklin having won their first round game against Bunkie 56-14 while Franklin pulled the upset against Red River. Franklin won a close one by a score of 16-13. Kinder will look to stop the momentum for Franklin and win a great game in the second round.
Cameron’s Pick: Kinder
Lee’s Pick: “I am going to go with Franklin. They are a very talented team and I think Kinder lost a lot of players from the last couple of years as well.”
#2 Amite (10-1) vs. #15 East Feliciana (6-5)
Cameron’s Game Preview: Amite won convincingly in their first round matchup with Springfield. Amite won by a score of 51-0. East Feliciana won their first round matchup with Capitol 22-8. Capitol will have to do everything they can to stop this Amite offense.
Cameron’s Pick: Amite
Lee’s Pick: “East Feliciana is going to give them a game. Skill wise, East Feliciana can play with Amite and in the trenches because East Feliciana has some big guys. I am going to take Amite in this game, but the Warriors better come to play because East Feliciana can beat them.”
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