Westlake is in sole possession of first place in District 4-3A, but the Rams’ final two regular-season games will not be easy with games against St. Louis and Jennings.
Westlake will host the Division II No. 6 Saints (5-2, 2-1) on Friday.
“We just have to take it one game at a time,” Westlake head coach John Richardson said. “We have been able to win the first three.
“We are just going to take St. Louis and not worry about Jennings yet. We just have to go out and play our best game. It is Week 9, so we should be playing our best game right now.”
The Rams have won three consecutive games since starting the season 0-4, but have not beaten the Saints since 2013. The Saints beat South Beauregard 42-17 last week.
“They (St. Louis) are good in all three phases of the game,” Richardson said. “They are good on defense and special teams.
“They do a real good job with the run and pass (on offense). The running back and receivers are as good as anybody in the district.”
St. Louis quarterback Cooper Miller has thrown just two interceptions and threw his seventh touchdown pass last week. Jadon Johnson had an 86-yard kickoff return, but Saints’ biggest offensive threat is running back Evan Joubert. He has run for 992 yards and 17 touchdowns on 170 carries, plus 185 yards on kick returns, including an 87-yard return against Kinder in Week 3.
“We are going to have to be aware of him in the kicking game,” Richardson said. “We didn’t do a very good job of covering kicks last week.
“We have to do a better job on defense of tackling. If you miss a tackle, he (Joubert) is going to take it to the house. We are going to have to do a better job of gang tackling and make sure we are in the position we need to be.”
In the last three games, Westlake’s J.J. Ross and Jasia Simien have combined for 956 yards and 12 touchdowns. On the season, Ross has 1,078 yards and 16 touchdowns while Simien has 833 yards and seven touchdowns.
The Rams have not only cut down on offensive turnovers but forced two on defense last week against Iowa.
Eli Goss scored on a 2-yard fumble return and Travon Gray picked off a pass that led to a touchdown by Simien.
“We actually created some turnovers on special team and defensive side of the ball,” Richardson said. “We have been able to get some good field position on offense.
“Obviously, they (Rams) are playing with more confidence. The key has been we have done a really good job of not turning the football over as much and not committing as many penalties.”