Players To Watch
Last 5 Seasons
About the Team
Head Coach: Brock Matherne, 3rd season (13-10, all at St. Louis)
Returning Lettermen: 17
Returning Offensive Starters: 7
Returning Defensive Starters: 8
Lettermen Lost: 7
State Runner-Up: 1973, 1978
Playoff Appearances: 1973, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1987, 1989, 1990, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022
by Matthew Bonnette, GeauxPreps.com Contributor
St. Louis Catholic High School made a statement in 2022 in head coach Brock Matherne’s second season in charge by posting a 9-3 record, a 5-1 mark in arguably one of Louisiana’s strongest districts in any classification, and a regional round appearance in the Division II Select playoff bracket.
Now going into year three, Matherne has his sights set on greater things for the Saints, and has the personnel to make that jump to becoming one of the state’s elite.
“I’ve been blessed to have a great administration that has allowed me to hire a staff that I’ve had with me for years,” said Matherne about his arrival in the summer of 2021. “That season, we started 14 sophomores, finished 4-6 and just five points away from winning six games.”
Those sophomores are now seniors heading into the ’23 campaign and have gained experience over the past couple of seasons that is a rarity in high school athletics.
“We saw some improvements in that first season and had it all come together last year winning nine games,” he said. “But everything in the past doesn’t matter now.”
The Saints will have to replace several key athletes from last year’s squad, including quarterback James Reina who accounted for over 3,000 yards of offense and more than 30 touchdowns. But stepping in will be Luke Pierson who started in the defensive backfield last season while also seeing some time behind center.
“Any time you replace a James Reina, it’s tough,” said Matherne. “But I’m extremely comfortable in Luke. He’s been a starter for us at defensive back the last two years and has some swagger to him. The team believes in him as well.”
That belief has allowed Pierson to be voted by the team to wear the legacy No. 1 jersey.
The Saints will be tough in all three phases of the game but the defensive and special teams will be the strengths.
“We return nine starters on defense and six of those starters have done it for three years,” Matherne commented. “Our offensive line returns three starters from last year so we know we can lean on them. We’re going to take advantage of their size and run the ball.”
Among those starters is senior linebacker Graham Montet whose 157 tackles last season was among the best in the state of Louisiana.
And in a district that includes Iowa, Lake Charles College Prep, Jennings, Westlake, Kinder and South Beauregard, the Saints know they’ll be battle tested week in and week out.
“I grew up in New Orleans as a defensive coordinator in a district with Edna Karr, O.P. Walker, John Curtis, and others, and didn’t think there could be a district any tougher,” said Matherne. “But with this one, you’re going to have to pack your lunch every week because it’s going to be a battle. But we don’t run from competition. We embrace it and look at it as a plus for us.”
The Saints will open up fall camp on Monday, August 1 and will have a scrimmage on Aug. 18 against Cecilia followed by a jamboree game against New Iberia on Aug. 25. St. Louis will kick-off the regular season on September 1 at Crowley.