Ferriday High and Kinder High will meet for the very first time as the Trojans host the Yellowjackets in a Class 2A quarterfinal contest at Melz Field Friday at 7 p.m.
The Trojans are seeking their third straight trip to the semifinals.
Top-rated Ferriday, 11-1, defeated Port Allen 36-13 Friday.
Kinder, ranked No. 8 in the power rankings, defeated Red River 28-14.
Both teams were home the first two weeks, allowing Ferriday to host this week.
The Yellowjackets are 8-4 on the season, defeating Rosepine 42-6 in the first round.
“They are a scrappy bunch and play hard,” said Ferriday coach Stanley Smith. “No. 5 (Ty Fuselier) is a really good fullback and their quarterback (Hayes Fawcett) is a good athlete. They are big up front and very disciplined. Defensively, they bring a lot of pressure. We have our work cut out for us.”
Kinder played Vidalia in the 1967 quarterfinals to a 0-0 tie. The tiebreaker then was first downs, which Kinder had 11 to Vidalia’s five to advance.
The Yellowjackets won the Class 2A state championship in 2013 (beating Many) and 2015 (beating Rayville) and were runners-up to Many in 2014.
Kinder lost to Franklin in the second round 34-28 last year as the No. 7 seed.
The Yellowjackets lost to Welsh 44-14 in 2017 in the quarterfinals after beating Rayville in the second round.
In 2016, Kinder lost to Sterlington in the quarterfinals.
“Each team is different,” said Kinder head coach Bret Fuselier. “We pride ourselves on playing physical football.”
Beside Ty Fuselier (no kin), the Yellowjackets rely heavily on third-year starting quarterback Hayes Fawcett, who stands 6-0 and weight 180 pounds.
“He’s been a really good player for us and does a good job with our offense.”
Fuselier said Ferriday earns its No. 1 ranking.
“They are big and have some athletes,” Fuselier said. “They are every bit as good as advertised, Their defensive tackles are good players and their quarterback (Kobe Dillon) makes their offense go with his arms and legs.”
Fuselier said each team he coaches is difference each year, but the goal is always to be playing at least Thanksgiving week.
“You cannot reach the Dome without playing on Thanksgiving,” he said. “We’re happy to be here. I think we are playing some of our best football now. We had some injuries early, but we’ve gotten some people back.”