FRANKLIN — The last time Franklin Senior High defeated Catholic High, FSH head coach Tremayne Johnson was a star player for the Hornets.
“It was my junior year in 2009,” Johnson said. “I was a strong safety and running back. In overtime, I made the gave-saving tackle and we won by 2 points here in Franklin.”
Friday at home, the Hornets (4-3, 4-2) will try to close out the regular season with a win vs. CHS (4-3, 4-2).
“I feel like it should be a pretty good game,” Johnson said. “Those guys are well-coached. They have a pretty good system where it should be a good, playoff-type game.
“We just want to try to play great defense and limit them with doing what they like to do. This will be a great test and a great measuring stick to see where we’re at as a team.”
Catholic High’s offensive strategy is no secret.
Junior quarterback KK Reno is second among area rushers with 749 yards and 13 TDs on 128 carries. Reno doesn’t put the ball in air much, having passed for 212 yards.
“We have some good, stout linemen in Gharin Stansbury and Daeton Maze,” Johnson said. “I think the guys are going to come out focused. Playing Ascension two weeks ago, they kind of made us a better team. We bounced back last week vs. Jeanerette.
“The guys came together and we fixed some mistakes. It was good to build off last week’s win. Also, we were missing some key personnel vs. Ascension. Our top receiver, J’Michael Gray, has returned from an injury. We think he could make a significant difference.”
On offense, the Hornets are led by quarterback Travis Zeno, tailback Jakyri Winston, Gray and Zylan Perry, who lines up at various positions.
Perry’s nickname could be “Mr. Excitement” the way the 6-foot-tall, 180-pound senior makes plays at quarterback, receiver, tailback and return man.
“I’ve always been blessed with a gang, a busload of athletes,” Johnson said. “Sometimes it’s best to just give them the ball and let them do what they do.”
CHS has several backs who run the ball effectively, including junior fullback Marco Austin, who is averaging five yards per carry, along with senior wingbacks Willie Regard (8.2 ypc) and Trace Williams (6.5 ypc).
“Defensively, we’re focusing this week on formations, ball keys and different reads,” Johnson said.
Currently, Franklin is in line to host a first-round playoff game as the No. 15 seed.