Hahnville crafts impressive shutout of East St. John, 21-0

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BOUTTE, La. – One week after seeing his team allow three of the biggest plays of Hanhville’s season-to-date against Terrebonne, head coach Nick Saltaformaggio challenged his defense to dig deep and regain their focus.

Facing an opponent averaging 46.5 points per game. Hahnville’s defense answered the challenge by providing their best performance of the year to shut out District 7-5A foe East St. John, 21-0.

The Tigers continually stifled the potent East St. John offense, dominating the line of scrimmage to force quarterback Sean Shelby to never feel comfortable in the pocket.  One week after the Wildcats scored 69 points in a victory over H.L. Bourgeois, the Hahnville Tigers defense held them to just two first downs for the entire first half.

Offensively, the Hahnville Tigers (5-0, 2-0) were led by their star running back Darryl Evans, who provided all of the offensive scoring with 14-yard and 11-yard touchdown runs.  For the game, Evans finished with 181 yards on 27 rushes with two touchdowns to lead the Tigers.

“Coach Henry Rando used to say, in big games you have to remember, best play, best player,” said Saltaformaggio on the big night his star running back recorded. “Darryl Evans was our best player and Inside Read was our best play.”

Not to be left out of the fun, the Hahnville defense got in on the scoring act, providing the game’s only score in the second half.  Brandon Camardelle intercepted Shelby’s second down pass at the East St. John 14-yard line and raced in uncontested for the pick-six early in the third quarter.

Coming into the game with over 800 yards passing and 10 touchdowns, Shelby was under constant harassment from the Hahnville defensive front and never found a groove throwing the ball to generate offensive success for the Wildcats.  The pressure resulted in Shelby being sacked three times and throwing three interceptions.

Hahnville first two offensive possessions resulted in three-and-outs.  However, the third time was the charm as the Tigers found their legs and put the first points of the game on the board.

Starting at their own 22-yard line, Hahnville utilized four consecutive rushes by Evans to move the ball up to the East St. John 36-yard line.  Two more Trey Labranch runs and an offsides penalty against the Wildcats gave Hahnville first down at the East St. John 14-yard line.  Evans needed just one carry from there to punch it for the game’s first score with a 14-yard touchdown to give Hahnville a 7-0 lead with 2:13 to play in the first quarter.

Hahnville added to their lead midway through the second quarter.  Starting at the East St. John 46-yard line, the Tigers gave the rock to Evans three straight carries, moving it up to the East St. John 20-yard line.  Three plays later, Evans’ bruising 11-yard run through multiple East St. John defenders extended the Hahnville lead to 14-0 with 6:49 to play in the second quarter.

The final score of the game would come early in the third quarter, following a great punt by the Tigers to pin the Wildcats deep in their own territory at the 10-yard line.  Attempting to provide a spark and generate some offense for East St. John (3-2, 1-1), Shelby came out throwing on the first two plays of the drive.  However, a mix up on the route with the wide receiver caused the second down pass to go right into the hands of Hahnville senior Brandon Comardelle at the East St. John 14-yard line, who easily ran it into the end zone for the final points of the game, to bring the score to 21-0 with 8:51 to play in the third quarter.

East St. John’s best opportunity to score came late in the third quarter when the Wildcats finally began to break free from the claws of the Tigers defense.  Starting at their own 15-yard line, the Wildcats quickly moved the ball into Hahnville territory for the first time all game with three completions by Shelby, giving East. St. John possession at the Tigers’ 47-yard line.

Two consecutive pass interference penalties and a six-yard Shelby scramble put East St. John inside the red zone at the Hahnville 16-yard line.  However, the momentum and offensive success would be tamed just one play later when Shelby’s fourth down pass fell incomplete.

Hahnville will look to improve to 6-0 next week when they travel to Thibodaux for another District 7-5A showdown.  East St. John will look to bounce back from the loss when they return home to host Helen Cox.

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