The Bossier Bearkats battled and battled against one of the state’s powerhouse programs Saturday afternoon, but they just couldn’t break through.
Bossier, the No. 4 seed, fell to No. 1 Vandebilt Catholic 2-0 in the Division III semifinals in Houma.
The District 1 champion Bearkats finished the season 19-3-3. The Terriers (22-4-2) will play the winner between No. 2 University Lab and No. 3 Lusher Charter in the state championship game. Vandebilt Catholic will be looking for its ninth state title.
If you want to measure how far Bossier has come as a playoff team, consider this. Two years ago, the Bearkats reached the quarterfinals for the first time since 2009 and lost to Vandebilt Catholic 8-0.
Saturday’s game was a far cry from that one. The Bearkats made things tough for the Terriers with a strong defensive effort.
Ryan Rogers scored the first goal with about 13 minutes left in the first half. He broke into the clear and headed toward the goal. Two Bearkats were back with him, but Rogers sneaked around one and put a shot in from the right side.
Dominic Arceneaux scored the second off a corner kick early in the second half.
The game was intense and very physical. At one point in the second half, three Bearkats were on the ground. One got up almost immediately and the others soon followed, but it was that kind of game with players from both sides having to shake off injuries after collisions.
Vandebilt Catholic’s defensive pressure kept the Bearkats from getting many scoring opportunities and no clear shots.
In the first half, Bossier got a free kick about 30 yards in front of the goal but it went straight to the Terriers’ goalkeeper.
With about 12 minutes left in the game, Bossier was able to control the ball and make a series of passes in front of the Terriers’ goal but couldn’t get a shot off. With a few minutes left, Marquis Harris got off quick shot off that looked like it had a chance, but it sailed wide right.
Seven Bossier seniors were part of a team that made school history by making the semifinals for the first time.
They were Harris, Jorge Alfaro (captain), Kelvis Cristales, Hilder Quintanilla, Joel Moreno Carlos Lemus, David Juarez and Marco Rodriguez.