The Ascension Episcopal Blue Gators Take the Next Step Going Into Their Second Season in Class 2A and Make it to the Dome
by Cameron Cerniglia
The Ascension Episcopal High School Blue Gators have had lots of success in their young program history. The Blue Gators have won at least eight games in every season since 2014. In 2016, the Blue Gators were the Class 1A state championship runner-up. Coach Matthew Desormeaux had the team prepared and they went 8-3 in 2017 after moving up to Class 2A. Going into the 2018 season, the team is young, but they have some extremely talented players.
So far in the 2018 season, Ascension Episcopal has gone 5-1 with their only loss being to Berwick High School in Week 5. Coach Desormeaux has a great core to lean on and it starts with Seth Kerstetter.
“Seth Kerstetter is our go to guy,” Coach Desormeaux said. “He is a natural born leader. He isn’t always the most vocal leader but he always leads by example.”
Louisiana Football Magazine’s own recruiting specialist Lee Brecheen thinks he is extremely underrated.
“Seth Kerstetter is one of the most underrated skills guys in the Lafayette area,” Brecheen said. “He reminds me of former Louisiana Tech and current San Francisco 49ers receiver Trent Taylor in his size and the way he runs. I think he’s a D-I guy. He would be a phenomenal slot receiver with his 5-9, 180 pound frame.”
Another talented receiver on the team is Brooks Whittington. Whittington is one of the teams leaders next to Kerstetter.
“Whittington is a D-III steal,” Brecheen said. “He will be a slot receiver. He doesn’t time fast but looks fast. He is very mature and a team leader.”
In the backfield, the Blue Gators have senior running back Jhalen Brown.
“Jhalen Brown is a big powerful back that has deceiving speed,” Coach Desormeaux said. “He has had a great year so far for us.”
Brecheen believes that Brown has made some major strides in his game between the 2017 and 2018 season.
“I saw him play in person,” Brecheen said. “He’s gotten faster and stronger in the offseason. Brown is a running back at the I-AA level and a full back at the DI level. He has powerful legs and is an aggressive runner. He is 220 pounds and all of 5-10. He is hard to tackle and would be a steal for a I-AA school.”
Anchoring down the offensive line is senior center Cameron Hartman.
“Hartman is a D-III guy,” Brecheen said. “He is small but is extremely tough.”
Defensive lineman Michael Rohrberger and linebacker Austin Arceneaux will lead the defense for the Blue Gators.
“Michael is an effort player,” Coach Desormeaux said. “He always gives full effort on every play and never takes a snap off.”
It is always important to have guys like that on your team. Coach Desormeaux knows that he can always count on him during games. Brecheen says that he is probably a D-III guy.
Patrolling the middle of the field is linebacker Austin Arceneaux.
“Arceneaux is playing linebacker now but will be a safety in college,” Brecheen said. “He will be a D-II guy.”
Having a group of players like this makes things easy for a coach. The team is in the heart of district play. The toughest game left on their schedule will be against Catholic N.I. High School, who is the defending Division III champion. With their 5-1 start, there is no way that the Blue Gators will not been seen making a deep run in this year’s playoffs.
Cameron is from Baton Rouge, LA. He graduated from Woodlawn High School in 2014. Cameron is now attending LSU where he is seeking a degree in Sport Administration with a concentration in commerce. Cameron joined the Louisiana Football Magazine staff in the summer of 2018 for his school internship. During the his days off, Cameron enjoys spending time with family and friends. Outside of being a football fan, Cameron also enjoys watching baseball and playing music.
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