Finish it|Williams, Mingo, Brown know Lumberjacks must fight to the end to accomplish goals

Published 5:01 pm Thursday, August 23, 2012

Bogalusa seniors Brian Williams, Trevonne Mingo and Cordero Brown understand that if the Lumberjacks are going to turn the corner after a disappointing season, they have to learn how to finish.

“We didn’t know how to finish,” Bogalusa coach Craig Jones said. “We lost five games in the last couple of seconds because we didn’t know how to finish. We need to win those games but it is going to come down to the little things like being disciplined, responsible and doing your job.”

Bogalusa was 1-9 last season and 0-5 in District 8-3A play losing four games by a touchdown or less and missed the postseason for just the second time in Jones’ six years..

“Talent doesn’t win ball games,” Jones said. “We are going to take it week by week and game by game. We can’t turn the ball over and have to create turnovers. We just have to play smart football.”

Williams returns at quarterback after earning all-district when he passed for 2,700 yards and 21 touchdowns in his first full season at the position. Mingo earned all-district at wide receiver after hauling in 12 touchdowns and 900 yards receiving. Brown intercepted five passes and had 50 tackles to earn all-district in the secondary.

“With this big senior class, I expect us to be able to finish ball games and come out with a victory,” Jones said.

The trio are part of a senior class of 18 that includes Chris Lowery, Matthew Melton, Chris Rivera, DaMarcus Powell, Kellan Mark, Dayshawn Harris, Denson Pittman, Richard Hamilton, Donel Magee, Stone Guy and others.

“You have to make the plays on the field,” Williams said. “We had too many turnovers last year and we couldn’t stop anybody. We have to cut that out and play strong defense because that is what wins championships. The community is behind the band, so when they come to see them, they will see us winning and get behind us”

“I sat on the bench two years in a row so I have been waiting on this for the longest,” Mingo said. “You just have to hustle every play and stop all that losing in the last second. We have to put a positive light on Bogalusa because the only thing everybody thinks about is the all the murders that happen here. We have to show them there is good, too.”

“It first starts off the field at school by being a good role model for the younger kids,” Brown said. “I don’t think the community supports us like they should. People doubt us and think Franklinton is the pride of the parish so we have to change that.”

Football and family mean a lot to the trio. Williams (May Belle Celestine) and Brown (Mary Armstong) draw inspiration from their late grandmothers while Mingo holds his late mother, Cathy Amos, dear. Williams’ mother, Earnestine Williams, Mingo’s nephew Chad Williams Jr. and Brown’s parents also are big influences.

“When I started playing basketball, I grew out of football but ever since I started back, it is all I do now,” Williams said. “My mama supports us. She has five kids and does it by herself, so Lord knows what the woman goes through.”

“I don’t know where I would be without football,” Mingo said. “My family looks up to me so I just have to show them that I put it on the line for them.”

“This is what made the town,” Brown said. “When you bury me, you bury me on the football field. Every game I go hard for my grandma and do it for her.”

Despite the disappointment of last year, the group’s sights are set for the highest pinnacle.

“We got to get to the ‘Dome and get our school to support us,” Mingo said. “Half of the people at our school pull for Varnado. It starts with the first game.”

“Our expectations are to get to New Orleans and play in December,” Williams said. “The way to do that is play disciplined on and off the field and do all of our assignments.”

“Going to the ’Dome,” Brown said. “That is my dream.”