JEANERETTE — Franklin High Head Coach Tremaine Johnson’s usually quiet demeanor changed a bit Friday night, as he broke into a big smile when discussing how his team finally put together four quarters of football for the first time this season. That four quarters of effort led the Hornets to a 46 -0 win over Jeanerette on Jeanerette’s homecoming night. The Hornets (4-3 overall, 4-0 District 7-2A) are tied atop the district standings with Catholic High, also 4-0.
Johnson had high praise on how his team controlled all facets of the game.
“Our guys came out and they gave it 100 percent,” Johnson said. “Our biggest thing was trying to keep it like that the whole game.”
On the other side of the field, pride filled ever-optimistic Jeanerette Coach C.C. Paul, as he spoke of his team’s effort and believes it is just another step in the learning process for his young players.
“Franklin started off like we’re starting off, and they built and built over the years until they have a good program.” Paul said.
“And that’s our goal, but we got to grow, and we got to learn from our mistakes.”
Paul added Franklin came in with a good game plan and capitalized on Jeanerette’s mistakes.
The Tigers started promising as they forced the Hornets to punt after three plays on their first possession.
Jeanerette took over in good field position and marched downfield, helped by two 15-yard penalties against Franklin.
But the Hornets put an abrupt stop to that drive when Travis Zeno picked off the first of two interceptions on the night.
The ensuing quick drive down the field culminated into a Zylan Perry to Malik King touchdown pass and after the failed 2-point conversion, it was 6-0 FSH.
If there was any weakness in the Hornet’s game, it was the two-point conversions as they made one in seven tries.
Jeanerette couldn’t muster anything on its next possession and the Hornets got a lucky break when the ball sailed over the JHS punter’s head.
Franklin took over and scored again, extending it’s lead to 12-0.
The Tigers continued to fight in the game, but couldn’t overcome Franklin’s numerous weapons, as the Hornets went on to score three more times in the first quarter.
FSH added two more scores in the second quarter, including a 70-yard interception return by Jordyn McCoy, to make the score at the break 38-0.
The Hornets scored again in the third quarter and neither team scored the rest of the way.
Franklin racked up nearly 350 yards of offense, while holding the Tigers to 135 yards of total offense.
Quarterback Zylan Perry threw for 185 yards and three touchdowns. Travis Zeno rushed for 20 yards and a touchdown and finished with 42 yards and a touchdown receiving and also had two interceptions on defense.
Malik King had 64 yards and a touchdown on nine carries. J’Michael Gray was the leading receiver with 91 yards and two scores on four catches. He also had one of the Hornets four interceptions on the night.
Jordyn McCoy finished with 61 yards and a touchdown rushing on offese and on defense he finished with 8 tackles, a forced fumble and a 70-yard interception return for a score.
While the score didn’t show it, Paul says he’s proud of his kids, especially his young players.
“I’m proud of my freshmen,” Paul said. “They’ve never been in an atmosphere like this before and I really think they did a good job of understanding what they need to do to get better.
Richard Lumpkin ran for 55 yards on 17 carries for the Tigers andle on defense, Ja’Raeil Harris and Tyrell Brooks led the team with seven tackles.
Brooks also had 2 tackles for a loss and a sack.
Perhaps the best highlight of the game occurred after the finish, when both teams gathered at midfield for a spirited pep talk by Paul followed by a prayer.
“The reason we invited the Franklin team to come gather with us was to show our kids can get along and to give thanks to God,” Paul said.
“Because as long as I’m the head coach in Jeanerette, we will always be classy.”
Paul added he holds a special bond with the Franklin players because he was a part of trying to mold them into respectful young men.
Johnson agreed with Paul, adding that they all consider the two teams as a supportive family.
“I talk to Coach Paul every day,” Johnson said.
“When he was here in Franklin, he coached most of our guys, so he knows them well and wants on the best for them.”
Jeanerette hosts Delcambre while FSH goes to Ascension Episcopal.