De La Salle’s Julien Gums earns metro September Athlete of the Month honor
NEW ORLEANS – Julien Gums, a senior quarterback for the undefeated De La Salle High School football program, has been selected as the Greater New Orleans Amateur Athlete of the Month for September. Monthly award-winners are chosen in voting by the Greater New Orleans Sports Award Selection Committee, sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl.
Gums, a senior quarterback, led De la Salle to a pair of signature wins over two reigning state champions in September. In a 28-26 win over Class 4A champion Karr, Gums rushed 26 times for 173 yards while also tossing a five-yard touchdown pass despite battling back spasms through the second half. In a 42-21 win over Division III champion Riverside, the 5-10, 225-pounder rushed 17 times for 157 yards and two touchdowns. He also completed a 38-yard touchdown pass. The Cavaliers also defeated South Lafourche (39-7) and St. Augustine (38-12). For the month, Gums tallied 12 touchdowns.
Gums was selected over a crowded field of nominees, including three other high school football stars, two college football standouts, a baseball gold medalist and an exceptional college volleyball player.
Also nominated from the prep ranks were Archbishop Rummel’s Chandler Fields, Riverside’s Jordan Loving and Hahnville’s Anthony “Pooka” Williams. Fields passed for 943 yards and 15 touchdowns with no interceptions as he led the Raiders to a perfect 4-0 September; Loving became Riverside’s all-time passing yardage leader with 4,923 yards, including a 557-yard performance against Rummel; and Williams rushed for 919 yards (an average of 9.57 yards per carry) and 12 touchdowns for Hahnville.
The college standouts are both wide receivers. Oklahoma State’s Jalen McCleskey, a graduate of St. Paul’s School, tallied 20 receptions for 308 yards and four touchdowns as the Cowboys went 3-1. Meanwhile, Stanley Morgan, a graduate of St. Augustine High School, recorded 26 catches for 395 yards and four touchdowns for the Nebraska Cornhuskers.
The other nominees were Landon Marceaux, who held Team USA’s 18-under team to the world championship, pitching seven innings and giving up just four hits with 11 strikeouts; and Xavier University of Louisiana women’s volleyball star Kayla Black, who registered 107 kills and 66 digs as she led the Gold Nuggets to an 8-1 record in September, one of the program’s best months ever.
The Greater New Orleans Sports Selection Committee has been selecting an Amateur Athlete of the Month each month since 1957. The athlete must be a native of the greater New Orleans area or must compete for a team in the metropolitan region in order to be eligible. Each of the monthly award winners will be honored in the summer at the Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Ceremony, hosted by the Allstate Sugar Bowl.
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