Bulldogs and Tigers playing in new districts in 2019
The high-school football season is still more than a month away, but the schedules for the teams' regular seasons are already up.
The new year will bring many fresh, new rivalries for the teams in Ascension Parish.
Things will certainly be fresh for Ascension Catholic in 2019. Four-year head coach Drey Trosclair resigned just a week after leading the Bulldogs to their second straight Division-IV state title game.
It didn't take them long to find a replacement. Ascension Catholic hired longtime Dutchtown head coach Benny Saia, who had been enjoying a two-year break from coaching. He coached the Griffins for 15 years and compiled a record of 110-55 in that time.
Saia inherits a team that has lost many key pieces from the club that finished as state runner-up the past two seasons. They parted walls with nearly 20 seniors.
However, the Bulldogs still have 3,000-yard running back Jai Williams. Williams was an All-State performer and last year's Ascension Parish Offensive MVP.
It is also the first year in the Bulldogs' new district. They have made the jump from District 6-1A to District 7-1A. The best thing about this is that they will no longer have to face Kentwood and Southern Lab.
Since being in District 6-1A with those two schools, they have only beaten Kentwood once, which was last season. They were winless against Southern Lab.
But those two heavyweights will be replaced with two strong upper-classification non-district opponents for Ascension Catholic. They'll face both St. Thomas Aquinas and Riverside Academy for their first two games. The second game against Riverside will be their home opener.
They'll also host Central Catholic on Oct. 4.
Their district opener will be against White Castle on the road the next week. And for the first time in three years, the Bulldogs will face parish and district foe Ascension Christian. The teams will meet in Donaldsonville on Nov. 1.
Another parish team changing districts this season is Donaldsonville. They make the move from District 10-3A to District 9-3A.
No longer will they be grouped with teams like St. Charles, De La Salle, Lusher Charter and Haynes Academy.
Their new league opponents will be E.D. White, Patterson, Lutcher and Berwick. An old foe will also be in the mix with St. James. The Wildcats are also making the move from District 10-3A.
Again, the Tigers will open the season against Assumption. These games have been extremely close. Donaldsonville has won four of the last six by a combined 15 points. Last year, Assumption came away with a 14-8 victory.
Other non-district contests will be against Port Allen, Broadmoor, White Castle and Woodlawn. The Tigers beat both Port Allen and White Castle last season by a combined score of 58-8.
Donaldsonville is looking to build on a positive 2018 campaign. Despite breaking in a plethora of new starters, including quarterback, the Tigers went 5-5 and reached the playoffs. There, they lost to archrival St. James in the opening round.
This will be Brian Richardson's fourth season as the head coach of the Tigers.