Spartans want to control clock at No. 10 Lutcher

Peter Silas Pasqua
East Ascension’s Q’Daris Lomas wraps up St. Charles Catholic’s Stafford Jones last week. Lomas and the Spartans will travel to Lutcher Friday night in The Dog Yard.

East Ascension head coach John Lambert understands Lutcher’s offense is potentially dangerous. That is why Lambert believes controlling the clock will be the key for a Spartan victory in the Dog Yard Friday night.

“The key is time of possession,” Lambert said. “We have to control the clock. If we have the football two to one on Lutcher we will be in better shape. We have to stop Lutcher’s offense. That is obvious but defensively, we have to go out and execute.”

East Ascension (0-2) is coming off a 21-6 loss to St. Charles Catholic, while No. 10 Lutcher (1-1) of Class 3A suffered its first loss of the season at the hands of Thibodaux, 3-0, last week.

“We need a win right now,” Lambert said. “Definitely. Our kids deserve it.”

Last season, East Ascension defeated Lutcher, then defending state champion, in a 48-47 overtime shoot-out. Former quarterback Jamal Jackson accounted for 352 of the Spartans’ 589 yards in that game and six touchdowns.

“Trust me, they are being reminded of that everyday regardless of what happened to them last week,” Lambert said. “It has been pounded into the heads of the kids of Lutcher that they have to beat us. We knocked them off last year, when they were No. 1 and we beat them in overtime and it was a dramatic victory and our kids celebrated. They haven’t beat us since 1986 and they think this is their year to do it.”

East Ascension has been plagued by turnovers and poor offensive production in their first two losses of the season. The Spartans have only scored one touchdown in two games this season after being shutout, 20-0, at Denham Springs.

Last week, the Spartans turned the ball over four times including three interceptions. Quarterback Adam Trahan did throw for 167 yards on 11 of 22 passing but threw the three picks.

Running back Avery Williams has rushed for 109 yards this season on 29 carries producing the Spartans lone touchdown, but Marcus Bailey has been held to 20 yards on 16 carries. Fullback Justin Pelle has caught four passes for 88 yards for East Ascension this season and Receiver Randell Williams hauled in five receptions for 53 yards last week. Safety Matt Richard, who has 21 tackles on the season, also brought in a 36-yard reception while seeing action on the offensive side of the ball.

“It is definitely going to be important for us for our offensive line to come and play,” Lambert said. “We have to start opening better holes for Avery Williams and Marcus Bailey.”

Lutcher, coached by Tim Detillier, was held to 146 total yards last week by Thibodaux, a week after producing over 300 in a 28-14 victory over St. Amant.

Quarterback Gavin Webster was 13 of 27 passing for 95 yards but was intercepted twice. Webster rushed for 116 yards on 15 carries a week earlier while running back Daniel Taylor produced 83 yards on 10 carries in the Bulldogs’ win. Receiver Jarvis Landry scored twice, on a reception and a run, in the victory over St. Amant.

“They are a very talented team,” Lambert said. “If you are going to have talent, you have one at quarterback, one at receiver and one at tailback. Webster can run away from any body and Landry can catch a ball anytime he wants. There is no doubt about that, so our defense has to do a good job of pressuring the quarterback into making poor decisions.”

End Ryan Moll has one sack on the season, while tackle Wade Julien has 13 tackles and counterpart Robert Gray has 11 including four for losses. 

“We definitely need a W,” Lambert said. “We really need it.”

East Ascension hosts Walker for homecoming next week before entering District 4-5A play at Dutchtown the following week.