NSU’s Turpin stadium was the scene of some hard fought gridiron action as area high school football teams debuted their 2019 teams Friday, August 30. It may have been a jamboree, but one would not be able to tell from watching the games. The players were showing intensity as if a playoff berth was on the line.
Union parish’s D’Arbonne Woods made short work of Ringgold in the first game of the evening, 22-0. Coach Byron Keller’s NCHS Chiefs put up a magnificent defensive effort against the top ranked New Iberia Catholic Panthers, but ultimately came up short 19-0. That score belies a superb effort by a young Chief squad against a top ranked south Louisiana team. The Chiefs just could not close the deal on offense. Nonetheless, there is much to like about this team. They’ll be back and better.
At a halftime ceremony during the NCHS v. New Iberia Catholic game, the Natchitoches Regional Medical Center presented the principals of NCHS, Lakeview and St. Mary’s with a donation for their schools. NRMC provides an ambulance stationed at each home game as well as athletic trainers and physician volunteers. The athletic training program incorporates student trainers, several of whom were inspired by their experiences to major in the area in college. All of this is an extra measure of safety and is provided free of charge.
The evening’s biggest surprise came in the last game, a matchup between the St. Mary’s Tigers and the Lakeview Gators. The Gators,a noted basketball powerhouse in basketball but a perennial doormat on the gridiron, won an 8-0 surprise upset, their first victory over the Tigers in years.
The NRMC High School Football Jamboree was a superb evening of well played, intense football. All of the teams showed grit and skill. It was a good chance for the players and coaches to test their mettle against an actual opponent. All of the players showed class and discipline in the way they comported themselves. The Natchitoches Parish Journal extends its best wishes to each team in the parish as you embark on your season. See you all in the playoffs!