Tigers playoff hopes on the line against Vandebilt Catholic
By: SCOTT JOINER
The Class 4A playoff picture for Morgan City’s football team will become much clearer after tonight’s game against Vandebilt Catholic at Tiger Stadium.
The Tigers likely need one more win to make the 32 team playoff bracket and, it won’t be easy, with the Terriers coming off a 27-20 loss to Assumption last week at home.
Vandebilt Catholic coach Laury Dupont has a wealth of experience with several state titles during his time at West St. John. Dupont has devised an offense over the years that throws a lot of different formations at opponents, which makes his teams tough to prepare for.
“They’re pretty multiple, they line up in anything from some thing like we saw against Pearl River, they run some wing stuff, some jet motion, they’ll get in the I and they’ll spread it out,” MCHS coach Brandon Nowlin said. “That’s the biggest thing is having to prepare for them is that they get into a number of different formations. They try to get the ball into the playmakers hands. That’s a challenge, when you have multiple sets and people touching the ball. With as many variations as they have, it’s obviously tough to prepare for.”
On defense, the Terriers held Assumption to less than 300 yards of offense last week. Much like the offense, the defensive coaches switch things up and bring steady pressure.
“Defensively, they bring pressure, they have a very well coached team,” Nowlin said. “They do a great job of mixing up pressure and disguising looks. They gave Assumption a lot of trouble, they’ve given a bunch of team’s trouble this year, they play sound special teams. They’re very well coached in every phase of the game and extremely physical. They play fast, give great effort from the start of the play to the whistle.”
Morgan City’s offensive line had issues last week that made it tough for the running game to get any momentum. Nowlin said it was partially due to the tough opponent, but the mindset going into the game was also a factor.
“We didn’t do what we needed to do offensively to take care of our business, hopefully we did get a few of those things cleaned up,” It comes down to a mindset and a mentality when you play in the trenches. If you go out there as a reactionary player, whatever side of the ball you are on, you’re going to have trouble. You have to go out there and set the tempo and the tone for what you’re going to do in the game. Hopefully we were able to get some of those things corrected in practice.”
The lack of protection led to quarterback Hoang Nguyen taking several hard hits late in the game. Those blows put Nguyen on the sideline for this week’s game with senior Brodie Anslum taking over the starting role this week.
Anslum started most of the Tigers games on 2010, so it shouldn’t be a problem for the MCHS offense.
“(Nguyen) is probably going to miss this week,” Nowlin said. “We’ve got Brodie Anslum that’s going to be quarterback for us. He started pretty much every game for us last season, so we have a lot of confidence in him to go out there and run the offense. Our guys are going to have to rally around him and execute.”