Acadiana/St. Paul's Preview

Tonight, St. Paul's and safety Jay Washington attempt to avenge their sole loss of the 2010 season vs. nationally-ranked defending Louisiana Class 5A state champion Acadiana.

Last season, the St. Paul's Wolves reeled off 12 straight wins before succumbing to eventual state champ Acadiana in the 5A quarterfinals. The Wolves said goodbye to several senior starters, including four-star defensive tackle Mickey Johnson (LSU) and wide receiver Jermaine Sams (SMU signee), but the Covington-based program appears to be just as strong this year -- based on last Wednesday's 38-7 rout of Karr.

The Wolves were sharp against Karr, which entered the the season perched atop the state rankings in 4A. Juniors Jay Washington (safety) and Ed Duplessis (linebacker) each picked off passes that culminated in points for St. Paul's. Kicker/punter Trent Domingue (Sr.) did everything right, such as repeatedly pinning Karr and its brand-new QB deep in their own territory.

St. Paul's, meanwhile, was breaking in its own new QB: Patrick Duncan. Duncan (6-1, 180, Sr.), younger brother of last year's starting QB Alec Duncan, completed 11-of-17 passes for 141 yards. He hooked up with sophomore Marcus Gaines (5-6, 155) on a 61-yard TD pass, and Gaines added a second touchdown on the ground. RB Kris Brumfield and FB Dylan Long combined for three more rushing TDs.

Acadiana, conversely, had little trouble in its season-opener vs. Northside. The Rams sprinted to a 29-7 halftime lead and eventually finished off the Vikings, 36-13. Senior RB Jeff Brown - one of the top sprinters in the nation - scored the first two TDs of the game and ended the night with 147 yards on 17 carries. Senior QB Stryker Trahan completed his only two passes, one of which went for a 34-yard TD to Austin Waguespack. Trahan, a starter last year at tight end, is committed to Ole Miss for baseball (catcher).

Acadiana, which runs the split-back veer on offense, rang up 41 points against St. Paul's last year.

"We have to stop the dive," said Washington, who started (and thrived) as a sophomore for the Wolves. "We have to make the QB keep the ball or pitch it. No. 24 (Brown) is real fast; we'll try to contain him. We didn't watch the film of last year's Acadiana game until this week. It's crazy how badly we played; nobody seemed ready to play.

"Our defensive line has to continue being real physical and playing mad. Ed Duplessis did a good job last week at linebacker; he's really fast. On offense, Marcus Gaines is more dedicated than he's ever been. He's really fast and can play receiver or running back. Trent Domingue kicked a 48-yarder with ease in the jamboree against Rummel, and he's been hitting field goals from 50 to 55 yards in practice. He has a big leg and we feel that we can rely on him in any situation."

Side Notes: St. Paul's vs. Acadiana gets started at approximately 8:30 P.M., following the conclusion of John Curtis Christian vs. Westgate. Tonight's doubleheader, which kicks off at 6:00 P.M., is the inaugural Allstate Sugar Bowl Prep Classic. Both of Acadiana head coach Ted Davidson's brother-in-laws were football standouts at St. Paul's.

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