Spartans confident hosting Walker for homecoming

Peter Silas Pasqua
East Ascension’s Matt Richard forces Lutcher’s Daniel Taylor out of bounds last week. Richard scored the Spartans’ only touchdown on an interception return. Richard and the Spartans host Walker Friday night at Spartan Stadium for homecoming.

Lutcher’s playmakers got the attention following the Bulldogs’ 41-6 win over East Ascension last Friday night but it was the Spartans’ junior running back Avery Williams who was the games’ leading rusher finishing with 114 yards on 23 carries. Williams has led the Spartans’ offense this season with 225 yards on 52 carries and one touchdown.

“We are going into this game with confidence,” East Ascension head coach John Lambert said. “We are in a position where we have to go out and execute and do the things that we are supposed to do - continue what we did in the second half at Lutcher and feed Avery Williams the football and see if he can get us another 100-yard day.”

Lambert and the East Ascension (0-3) of District 5-5A will undoubtedly utilize Williams often again to establish the ground game Friday night when they host Walker (0-3) of District 4-5A for homecoming at Spartan Stadium.

“That is what we have to do,” Lambert said. “The longer we keep our defense off the field, the better off we are going to be, because when our defense is fresh, they are a pretty salty bunch of kids. We want to give them an opportunity to be fresh throughout the whole game and not just in the first quarter.”

Walker fell to Broadmoor 14-6 a week ago and have not won a game in two years coming in on a 23-game losing streak.

“I don’t know if you are ever favored,” Lambert said. “You should win every game you play. We are just going to come out and execute and do the best that we can do. That is all that we can ask of our kids. They have practiced hard this week and they are ready play.”

Senior quarterback Adam Trahan has passed for 167 yards this season on 11 of 24 passing but has been intercepted four times and left the field late in the first half with a concussion last week. Sophomore Emerson Foster replaced him and completed 2 of 10 passes for 20 yards but was intercepted twice. Fullback Justin Pelle (4 receptions, 88 yards) and receiver Randall Williams (five catches, 53 yards) has been the top targets this year, but Williams suffered an injured knee last week. Senior Bradley Day hauled in the only two completions last week.

Senior safety Matt Richard scored the Spartans only touchdown against Lutcher on a 40-yard interception return and linebacker Tre’ Griggs has had an interception.

East Ascension defeated Walker 53-6 last season as Williams led the Spartans with 149 yards on 16 carries to go with two touchdowns.

Walker is under first year head coach Mike Todd and return nine starters, with six on offense and three on defense. The Wildcats are led by senior running backs David Zachery and Beau Dunn. Senior linebacker Dakoda Cifreo lead the defense

“You have to give them a tremendous amount of respect for how hard their kids play from the beginning to the end of the game,” Lambert said. “Zachery, whether he is at quarterback or running back, is obviously their best football player and they do a great job of finding a way to get the ball into his hands. He didn’t play a lot against Broadmoor but I have a feeling he will be back against us and be healthy and ready to play.”

Walker fell 39-8 to open the season before losing to Mandeville 35-0.

East Ascension opens district play next week at Dutchtown. 

“It would definitely help us to get a win heading into this district,” Lambert said. “We are in a position right now where we need some confidence on offense. Our defense is definitely already confident but we have to put the ball in the end zone and let everybody know our offense has come to play.”