Wildcats look to defend District 2-3A title

The Wossman Wildcats are looking to defend their 2015 and 2016 District 2-3A championships and forge ahead through the Louisiana High School Athletic Association’s (LHSAA) Class 3A state playoffs and end the year by hoisting a state football championship in the Mercedes Benz Superdome in December.

In order for Wossman to repeat as District 2-3A champions and navigate their way down the “Road to the Dome,” the Wildcats will need to listen, learn and live the message that Wossman coach Dean Smith and his coaches are laying out for their team as the Wildcats prepare for the 2017 season.

“We have to believe in this team and the coaches,” Smith said. “Keep the focusing on the team slogan-Family, Faith, and Discipline.”

Over the past two seasons, Wildcats have been one of the top teams in Class 3A throughout the regular season, but Wossman has suffered the misfortune from a bad draw in the post season.  In 2015 and 2016, the Wossman Wildcats football seasons have ended in the second round at the Lutcher Bulldogs who went on to win back-to-back LHSAA Class 3A state titles.

Another hurdle Wossman will need to fulfill to be considered as power house Class 3A contender is to win an outright district championship.

Over the past two seasons, Wossman has failed to capture the outright District 2-3A title. In 2016, Wossman and Carroll shared the District 2-3A title with 4-1 district records while the 2015 season ended with the Wildcats in a three way tie between Carroll, Wossman and Union Parish all of which had 4-1 district records.

In order to take the Wildcats to the next level, Wossman will look to sophomore quarterback Nick Traylor (6’3”, 190 pounds) to lead the Wildcats’ offensive attack.   Joining Traylor in the Wildcats’ backfield will be junior running back Jarrett Johnson (5’6”, 163 pounds) and sophomore running back Dezmeon Watson (5’5”).

At the receiver positions, Wossman will feature sophomore tight end Jacoby Collins, senior wide receiver Johnathan West (5’10”, 160 pounds), senior wide receiver Brice Owens (5’9”, 146 pounds), junior wide receiver Stephan Maxwell (5’6”, 155 pounds) and senior wide receiver Jarvis Roberson (5’10”, 165 pounds).

Up front, the Wildcats will count on right tackle Kevin Metoyer, senior right guard Orlando Chatman (5’11”), senior center Josh Jones (6’2”, 295 pounds), junior left guard Detavion Anthony and sophomore left tackle Graceon Jackson (6’1”, 250 pounds) to protect Traylor and open holes for the Wildcats’ running backs.

On defense, Wossman’s front eight will feature junior defensive tackle Rayland Coleman, senior defensive tackle Oteago Carter (6’1”, 223 pounds), junior defensive end Ben’Davion Gholston (6’2”, 185 pounds), junior defensive end Shamar Pickering, senior linebacker Jailen Jones (5’8”, 172 pounds), sophomore linebacker Jay Jones (5’7”), junior linebacker Earl Brown(5’4”) and junior linebacker Kadorian Dougans.

Anchoring the Wildcats’ defensive secondary will be sophomore free safety Jalen Harris, senior defensive back Dontrell Smith (5’9”) and senior defensive back Johnathan West (5’10”, 160 pounds).

Traylor will also be counted on to handle all of the Wossman kicking duties as the team’s punter and kicker while Brice Owens will see time as the Wossman holder and Dequaris Turner will be the long snapper.

The offseason saw the re-district and reclassify. District 2-3A lost a member but picked up a giant. The Caldwell Parish Spartans will leave District 2-3A to join the Central Louisiana Class 3A district.

Filling the void left by Caldwell Parish will be the Sterlington Panthers who are fresh off a 2016 LHSAA Class 2A State Champions.

The road to repeating as District 2-3A champions will not be easy for Wossman, but Coach Smith has scheduled a pre-district schedule that should prepare the Wildcats for a tough district stretch.

“Our pre district schedule will be tough and it will assist us with getting an idea of what we need to work on to repeat as district champs,” Smith said.  “We must to continue to learn from our mistakes.”

The Wossman pre-district schedule features 2016 Class 5A state runner-up (West Monroe), a Class 1A semifinalist Oak Grove, one Class 4A state quarterfinalist in Benton and two Class 3A playoff qualifiers in the Peabody Magnet Warhorses and the St. James Wildcats.

After competing in the 2017 Eddie Robinson Classic High School Football Jamboree, Wossman will open its 2017 campaign with a three game road trip as the Wildcats will travel to Benton on Friday, September 1, Oak Grove on Thursday, September 7 and West Monroe on Friday, September 15.

Wossman will open its home schedule on Friday, September 22 when the Wildcats play host to the St. James Tigers.  On Friday, September 30, Wossman will travel to Alexandria to face the Peabody Warhorses and will open their District 2-3A schedule with a road trip to Tallulah to play the Madison Parish Jaguars on Friday, October 6.

On Friday, October 13, Wossman will host the Sterlington Panthers before travelling to Richwood to face the Rams on Friday, October 20.

The “2017 Baby Bayou Classic” will take place at Wossman’s Grady Jones Memorial Stadium on Friday, October 27 as the Wossman Wildcats will host their cross-town rival in the Carroll Bulldogs.

Wossman will close out its 2017 regular and District 2-3A schedules will a road trip to Farmerville as the Wildcats will take on the always tough Union Parish Fighting Farmers on November 3.

WOSSMAN WILDCATS SIDE BAR

Wossman Head Coach: Dean Smith (4th Season, Overall Record: 20-15, District Record: 10-4)

Wossman Assistant Coaches: Tony Butler, Pat Williams, Desmond Leonard, Greg James and Charles Hunter.

Wossman Home Football Stadium: Grady Jones Memorial Stadium (Artificial Turf)

Wossman Games will be broadcasted on Soul of the City – Magic 97.3 FM

Wossman Wildcats’ Past Five Seasons:

2016 Overall Record: 8-4 District Record: 4-1 (District 2-3A Co-Champions, Regional Playoff Qualifier)

2015Overall Record: 7-5 District Record: 4-1 (District 2-3A Tri-Champions, Regional Playoff Qualifier)

2014 Overall Record: 5-6 District Record: 2-2 (District 2-4A Third Place, Regional Playoff Qualifier)

2013 Overall Record: 5-6 District Record: 2-2 (District 2-4A Third Place, Regional Playoff Qualifier)

2012 Overall Record: 4-6 District Record: 1-3 (District 2-4A Fourth Place, Regional Playoff Qualifier)

State Championship Season(s): 1986

State Runner-Up Season(s): 5 state runner-up finishes – 1979, 1983, 1985, 1989, 1993

State Semifinalist Season(s): 11- 1979, 1983, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1993, 1994, 1995

State Quarterfinalist Season(s): 14 – 1979, 1982, 1983, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996

State Playoff Seasons: (34 playoff appearances / 1969, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)

Playoff Record: 43 wins – 33 losses