Ville Platte hoping to reach playoffs; needs win over Northwest
Ville Platte is in need of a win and the only team that stands in their way of a possible playoff berth is a team that the Bulldogs are very familiar with; the Northwest Raiders.
Since 2013, Ville Platte and Northwest have tangled four times with the Raiders coming away with wins in all four contests. However, with the exception of a 54-6 loss in 2016, the Bulldogs have played the Prairie Rhonde squad quite tough, losing the other three games by an average of only 4.3 points.
Game time for the District 5-3A showdown tomorrow at Northwest is set for 7 p.m.
“I think we have played them well over the years,” stated Ville Platte head coach Jorie Randle. “And, I believe that we match-up well with them this year as well. They have a great program that has been very successful over the past few seasons. It would be nice to go there and get a win on their home field.”
As of Tuesday, Ville Platte (3-6, 1-3) found themselves at No. 38 in the latest LHSAA power ranking. The Bulldogs must reach the No. 32 spot or higher if they want a place in the 2019 post-season.
Despite the uphill climb, Randle believes that a win over Northwest would be enough to propel Ville Platte into the playoffs.
“If we are able to pick up this big win, I think that we would have enough power points to have a spot in the playoffs,” said Randle. “But, first we have to win. This is definitely one of those situations where we are going to have to be perfect in order to make sure that we add another victory to our total.”
Northwest comes into the contest with an overall record of 4-5. The Raiders are currently 3-1 in district play.
Last week, Northwest stunned one of the top seeds in Class 3A with an 18-7 win over the Iota Bulldogs. Before the Raiders took down the Bulldogs, Iota was seeded in the top 10 of the power ranking.
Northwest averages 26.8 points per game on offense and gives up 27.5 points per game on defense. However, the Raiders have only surrendered 15 total points in their last two games; both wins.
“They are big on defense and they have athletes on both sides of the ball,” commented Randle. “The game will come down to a few keys. First, we have to play better on special teams. Second, we have to try and slow down their offense, especially their quarterback. Finally, we are going to have to try and win the field position battle. We are coming into the game like it is a playoff game. It is going to take a total team effort, but the players know what is on the line.”