Fall sports coming to an end as winter takes over
There's almost too much going on this time of year.
The state cross-country meet was finally run in Natchitoches last week following a brief weather delay.
In Sulphur, the state swim championships had their moment in the spotlight.
Nope, didn’t go.
The state football playoffs for Select divisions were in their quarterfinal rounds, while Non-select classes held regional round games.
Made that one.
And when I opened my back door and stepped onto the patio at my home and the north wind hit me last Sunday morning, I was thankful that basketball season has started. And just in time.
With everything going on in and around the LHSAA, there is little time to exhale. And since I can’t clone myself, this guy has to select events to cover and photograph wisely and thriftily on my employer's behalf.
So I chose football and basketball. Unfortunately, all the local Catholic school football teams still alive in the playoffs played on the same Friday night.
One of the early girls’ tournaments is the Dominican Thanksgiving Classic, which took place Nov. 23-25. Among the 12 teams entered were Mount Carmel, Cabrini and the host school. Dominican and Cabrini opened their seasons with victories. Not so for Mount Carmel.
And what a rough night it was for the Catholic football teams.
The divisional playoffs began with eight schools from the Archdiocese of New Orleans competing.
St. Augustine and Archbishops Shaw and Hannan were eliminated in the first round.
St. Paul’s, Holy Cross, De La Salle and the defending Division I champion Jesuit exited in the regional round.
The lone survivors are Division I’s top seed, Archbishop Rummel, and St. Charles Catholic, the No. 5 seed in Division III.
And it won’t be an easy semifinal round for either.
It was a happy Halloween for Rummel’s coaches, players and fans as the Raiders defeated John Curtis in their first meeting as district rivals. Now they’ll get to do it again on Nov. 27 with roles reversed.
This semifinal-round game to determine which plays for the Division I championship against either Catholic High or Evangel will be played at Joe Yenni Stadium. But this time, John Curtis will be the “home” team.
It’s really not a big deal because it’s an adopted home field for both schools. It’s just that Rummel fans will be sitting on the Phlox Street side of the stadium. Same number of seats (4,000).
And it was no surprise that it took a blocked extra point attempt for St. Charles Catholic to defeat Madison Prep, 13-12, in the regional round of the Division III playoffs last week.
The two were well matched; the Comets, the No. 5 seed, and Madison, No. 4.
Now St. Charles has the opportunity, as dubious as it may sound, to have a rematch with District 12-2A rival (and champion) Riverside Academy. The meeting on Oct. 23 didn’t go well for the Comets.
They lost, 35-3, at home and will have to play at Riverside on Nov. 27.
And as the fall sports fade out, a round of applause goes to Coach Ryan Manale and his staff at De La Salle. The Cavaliers went 9-2 before being eliminated from the playoffs but had their most successful season since 1961 when they won 10 games.
Nuss gets a second MVP
Mount Carmel’s Kristen Nuss, who earned Division I Most Valuable Player honors following the Cubs’ second straight state volleyball title, received a similar award for her effort in the East’s five-game victory over the West in the Louisiana Coaches Association All-Star game on Nov. 21.
The senior, who will take her talent to LSU, earned the coaches’ nod after being credited with 14 digs.
Nuss was joined by fellow Catholic school athletes, Elle Silvia and Avery Hardy (Acad- emy of the Sacred Heart), Marissa Lagasse (Mount Carmel), Briana McKay (Ursuline), Rakell Spencer and Bailey Hepting (Cabrini) and Kayla Jones (Archbishop Chapelle).
In a competitive and exciting match played at the Newman Palaestra, the East won, 25-20, 25-11, 21-25, 23-25, 15-9.