Sideslines, with Tryve Brackin

Deidre Cruse, Governmental Reporter
MORE EAGLES SIGN…St. John High’s Shea Ourso (seated left) and Kade Yarbrough (seated right) were honored with a special college athletic scholarship signing party last week. Ourso signed to play baseball at Alabama Southern, while Yarbrough signed with Baton Rouge Community College. In the back are: from left, Alabama Southern Coach Daniel Head, Mr. and Mrs. Rodney Ourso, Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Yarbrough, and SJHS Coach Heath Whittington.

I am sorry I missed the three signing parties two weeks ago for White Castle’s Ronald Martin, Plaquemine High’s Darvin Butler, and St. John’s duo of Warren Bates and Herman Fitch. They all hit on deadline time for the newspaper and amid my battle to transfer documents from my old Mac computer to a new one the company provided me.

After a few work hours of attempting to transfer numerous files and photos from one computer to the other, things settled down at midweek last Wednesday to where I got last week’s POST SOUTH pieced together in time to break away after lunch to attend yet another signing of two more parish prep athletic standouts.

St. John High’s duo of Shea Ourso and Kade Yarbrough signed letters of intent to attend different colleges and to play the next level game of baseball. With those two added to the four previous week football signees, we had a record number expecting to advance to the next level of athletic competition, at least during the national signing period.

If the gathering for Bates and Fitch the week prior was as eventful at SJHS (and I am sure it was), the Eagles have been doing a lot of partying lately. The school’s library was filled with students as well as family, friends, and faculty. Laurie Ferachi Ourso made sure I took a photograph of the TWO enormous cakes she brought to the ceremonies. No doubt the SJHS student were alert for their next hour of studies with plenty of sugar rush!

I was especially happy to see Shea and Kade have the opportunity to advance in education and athletics because I have known both young gentlemen since their childhood. I watched Kade’s parents grow up from high school, known his grandparents for over 30 years, and seen him play since middle school football years. I can say the same for Shea.

I spent many a Plaquemine High football game on the sidelines with Shea and his granddad Frank Ferachi. As a former coach and administrator, Frank has been a sidelines partner of mine at PHS games for three decades. Long about a dozen years back, a little redheaded tike began to show up at PHS games with his grandfather and his uncle, Luke Ferachi, who has been a longtime volunteer manager for football/basketball at the local high school. It was Shea. He grew up around prep sports just as Kade had done down in White Castle.

Shea, who signed to play baseball and likely pitch for Alabama Southern, got a special boost when his future college diamond coach, Daniel Head, showed up for the signing ceremonies. Head pitched all the way to Triple A minor league ball for the Seattle Mariners organization and that was a big reason Ourso decided to go to the school.

Kade decided upon a growing Baton Rouge Community College baseball program, where former SJHS Eagles Galen Johnson and Andre Landry currently play ball. Yarbrough will become one of many Plaquemine, Brusly, and Pot Allen area former prep players who have joined up with the BRCC program since L.J. Dupuy took over as the diamond mentor.

Dupuy, a longtime friend, is well known on the Westbank for his baseball knowledge. He coached the Brusly American Legion Senior diamond program for many summers before going on to run a pair of minor league baseball franchises. In recent years he took over the BRCC baseball program.

SJHS has 13 former student-athletes playing on the college level. By next fall, four more will be headed to colleges and universities to continue their education and play collegiate sports.

CURRENT PLAQUEMINE HIGH Assistant Coach Gary Adkins is headed to St. Martinville High to take over as the head gridiron coach next fall. He will run spring football at MHS, but will finish up the classroom year at PHS.

Adkins previously was a head coach at Port Allen, White Castle, and Donaldsonville and an assistant in football twice at PHS, at Woodlawn, and Catholic of Pointe Coupee.