Bayou all-stars unite to face River on Friday


Vandebilt Catholic quarterback Elijah McGuire (15) looks to lead the Bayou all-stars to a win on Friday night over the River Parish all-stars. (Photo by File Photo)


E.D. White Catholic standout linebacker Geoffrey Hebert and his Cardinals teammates spent Sept. 1 trying to tackle Vandebilt Catholic star quarterback Elijah McGuire.

And while the Cardinals opened the 2012 prep season with a victory over the Terriers that day, Hebert, McGuire and many other area senior all-star players will finish their high school football careers together and with one common goal — to beat the River Parish all-stars.

The 13th Annual HTV-10 Thibodaux Lions Club Bayou vs. River All-Star Showdown is set for 7 p.m. Friday at Nicholls State's John L. Guidry Stadium in Thibodaux. Tickets are $7 and proceeds go to local charities and scholarships for area high schools students.

All-star senior football players from Assumption, Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes (Bayou Team) will play all-star senior football players from St. Charles, St. John and St. James parishes (River Team).

Hebert said it is nice to have McGuire, who led the state in rushing this season with over 2,600 yards and 31 touchdowns and led the Terriers to the Class 4A quarterfinals, on his team this time.

"He is a special player, a great football player, one of the best players around," Hebert said. "It's nice to have him on your team. It's a big advantage. It's been awesome to be around all of these guys. I have been playing against some of them since I was 8 or 9 years old. We just have to play with 110 percent effort and make plays."

McGuire said he has embraced his final few days of high school football.

"This is my first time experiencing anything like this, and it has been great," McGuire said. "It feels like we have been playing together for a long time. We just have to play smart and play our hearts out like coach said and play for the love of the game. I think it will be great on Friday night."

The Bayou Team's head coach will be Terrebonne head coach Gary Hill, while the River Team's head coach will be Hahnville High assistant coach John Lambert.

"The kids are doing a good job, and we have seen a lot of good talent," Hill said. "The kids have practiced hard and have enjoyed themselves. I think we are going to have pretty good continuity. We have some big, quick kids, and we have become a team in a short amount of time. We just need to take care of the ball and control the clock. It may be a game where the team who makes the least amount of mistakes wins. This game is great because it helps the community, and we like the football game as well."

Assumption offensive lineman Hunter Alleman said while the experience has been fun so far, the Bayou will have to play well against the River to have a chance at winning on Friday.

"This has been a great experience," Alleman said. "It's a little different playing with different people, but we still have to open holes and play good, solid football."

A pair of Tulane commitments, Leonard Davis, a defensive back from East St. John and Luke Jackson, a defensive end/linebacker from St. Charles Catholic, highlight the River Team roster.

Other defensive standouts for the River are St. Charles safety Sam McMahon, St. James linebacker Seth Keller and West St. John linebacker Dontre Turner.

A few of the other top players for the River are West St. John running back Kylum Favorite, Hahnville running back Sergio Medina, Riverside Academy running back Jonquial Sanders and Lutcher wide receiver Spencer Roussel.

NOTES

Last year, the River won 16-14 on a 42-yard field goal as time expired to tie the series (in its current format) at 3 after trailing 14-0 entering the fourth quarter ... HTV will show the game at 1 p.m. on Dec. 29 and 30 and at 1 p.m. Jan. 5 and 6 with NFL analyst and college football expert Mike Detillier and HTV's Stan Gravois on the call and Harry McCulla on the sidelines ... The Lion's Club puts money from the game toward scholarships for some players and cheerleaders involved and toward other community causes ... Last season the Thibodaux Lion's Club distributed $7,500 in scholarships to student-athletes and cheerleaders who participated in the game.... NFL player Brandon Jacobs holds the all-time rushing record in the game with 230 yards set in 2000 ... For complete rosters from both teams check Page 2B or visit bayoupreps.com.