Lutcher’s Webster tops 4A All-State list

BY LORI LYONS

WRITTEN FOR THE LSWA

Many Louisiana high school football fans felt that the 2009 Class 4A race was one of the toughest in recent memory. Even down the stretch, there was no clear cut favorite to win the title.

And the competitiveness of this year’s Class 4A field is clearly reflected in this year’s Class 4A All-State team, which features a diverse group of athletes from 16 different schools across the state.

Some predicted that Lutcher would take the step from Class 3A state champion to Class 4A state champion. The Bulldogs certainly had the weapons.

Senior Gavin Webster simply picked up where he had left off in 2008 as a dual-threat quarterback. The diminutive (5-foot-11) Webster completed 151 of 217 for 2,390 yards and 32 touchdowns, plus he had 111 carries for 730 yards and 16 touchdowns to help the Bulldogs complete a perfect 10-0 regular season and earn Player of the Year honors. But the Bulldogs’ dreams of back-to-back championships were crushed by Neville, which took a 42-0 victory, in the semifinals.

“I said all year, as Gavin goes, we go,” said Lutcher coach Tim Detillier. “It looked like he just picked up where he left off the year before. He didn’t miss a step. I will say this, Lutcher has been blessed with so many great athletes over the years. But I can’t remember another athlete that was so consistent. His numbers were just unbelievable. He was born to run the spread offense.”

The Franklinton Demons were another favorite to win the title. Also undefeated in the regular season, the Demons earned the No. 1 seed in the playoffs then, in a rare Louisiana snowfall, defeated No. 2 seed Salmen 60-0 to advance to the finals for the first time since 1981 – the first year of the LHSAA Prep Classic’s existence.

Franklinton coach Shane Smith is the Coach of the Year.

There probably wasn’t much talk about O.P. Walker winning any state titles this season. The Chargers finished the regular season 3-6. But there was much discussion about junior defensive tackle Anthony Johnson. A game plan-altering player, the District 10-4A defensive Player of the Year, who has already committed to LSU, recorded 79 tackles, including 21 tackles for loss and 16 sacks. He also forced three fumbles, recovered two fumbles and had one interception.

“And he’s a junior,” said O.P. Walker coach Emmanuel Powell. “Believe it or not, he can still get better. He hasn’t reached the ceiling yet. He’s a hell of an athlete. Teams would sometimes double and triple team him, or you could see they would run to the other side to get away from him.”

Lutcher wide receiver Jarvis Landry was on the receiving end of 62 of Webster’s passes for 1,158 yards and 13 touchdowns. He also rushed for one touchdown, returned kicks and played defense. Belle Chasse wide receiver James Wright returns to the All-State team after catching 51 passes for 1,125 yards and 15 touchdowns. Neville’s Jeremy Runner caught 35 passes for 601 yards and five touchdowns, plus he rushed for 478 yards and eight touchdowns.

The running backs are Pearl River’s James Gillum, who rushed for 1,872 yards and 30 touchdowns on 272 carries; Franklinton’s Josh Robinson, who rushed 96 times for 1,293 yards and 22 touchdowns and had 11 catches for 205 yards and five touchdowns; and Neville senior Rico Pollard, who rushed for 857 yards and 13 touchdowns on 117 carries for the state champion Tigers.

The offensive linemen are Audonnis Madison (6-5, 290, Sr.) of Karr, Jared Trosclair of Lutcher (6-2, 250, Sr.), Xavier Jefferson (6-3, 235, Jr.) of Franklinton, Ryan Zeller (6-5, 270, Sr.) of St. Michael’s and Keenan Wilson (5-9, 235, Sr.) of Franklinton.

Karr quarterback Benton “Munchie” Legaux is the team’s athlete. The 6-4, 185-pound Colorado commitment completed 93 of 166 passes for 1,248 yards and 20 touchdowns, plus he rushed for another 611 yards and nine touchdowns.

While Johnson anchors the defensive line, Karr’s Harold Legania, a 6-4, 250-pound senior who has committed to Minnesota, had 78 tackles and 10 sacks. Salmen’s Isame Faciane (6-5, 255, Sr.) had 44 tackles and eight sacks. Franklinton’s LaDarius Bickhan (6-0, 210, Sr.) had 9.5 sacks.

Linebacker Waderrious Sellers (6-10, 210, Sr.) of Neville recorded 103 tackles, on sack and one interception. DeRidder’s DeShazor Everett (6-0, 175, Jr.) recorded 76 tackles, six tackles for loss, two interceptions and five blocked kicks. Karr’s Dwayne Mitchell (6-2, 210, Sr.) recorded a combined 39 tackles for loss among his 86 stops, with 18 sacks. And Franklinton’s Joshua Marks (5-8, 195, Sr.) had 37 tackles for the Demons.

The defensive backs are Devon White of McDonogh 35 (10 interceptions), Trevence Patt of Breaux Bridge (38 tackles, 26 assists), Todd Washington of Lutcher (26 tackles, one interception, two fumble recoveries) and Earnest Andrus of Northside (51 tackles, two sacks, three interceptions)

Punter Kris Albarado of St. Louis had a season average of 42.6 yards. Place kicker James Bice of St. Louis was 26-of-26 on point after kicks and kicked seven field goals, including a 50 yarder and a 52-yarder. Return specialist Imoan Claiborne of Alexandria had two kick returns for touchdowns and five punt returns for touchdowns.

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