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Photograph by Freddie Herpin

Editor/Consulting Writer

The six-week road trip is over, the team bus is in the garage and Opelousas High is ready to begin a district title defense with a Homecoming game at Donald Gardner Stadium.

Opelousas completed an extended non-district road-game schedule Thursday night with a 42-13 victory at New Iberia High, a victory that Tigers’ head coach Jimmy Zachery, Jr. attributed to his linemen.

“I thought our offensive line played well and played physical. The o-line guys were able to move people and overall the trenches did well for us tonight,” Zachery said.

Opelousas is 4-2 heading into the district opener against Livonia, which defeated Beau Chene 14-7 on Friday night.

After a district schedule that required Opelousas to travel about 1,000 miles to all areas of Louisiana, Zachery said it’s time for his team to focus on the remainder of the schedule which also includes Breaux Bridge, Cecilia and Beau Chene.

“We’ve played a really tough schedule and our district is solid. We started against a real good Teurlings team, then played at Natchitoches Central, Lake Charles Prep, St. Amant and Leesville,” said Zachery.

Opelousas High began 2023 as the coaches’ favorite to win a second straight district championship.

The Tigers, Zachery said, have to continue working on self-improvement.

“We are just going to come back this week, work on ourselves and focus on the little things and on doing those things better,” said Zachery.

Zachery said all the traveling his players did since the first week in September could prove to be helpful.

“In the long run, I think it will help us when we travel in the playoffs. Our kids took on the mindset that we were going to go somewhere, make it our field and no matter where we play, we were going to come out with a win,” Zachery added.

Opelousas, Zachery noted, grabbed the early momentum on the first New Ib