FNF: Riverside leaning on experienced youth to continue winning ways


RESERVE, La. — Riverside Academy finished the 2020 football season with a 6-2 record and loss to Vermilion Catholic in the quarterfinal round of the Division IV playoffs.

In 2021, Riverside will be replacing the production of our Friday Night Football Player of the Year Gage Larvadain.

Gage Accounted for 33 total touchdowns last season as a quarterback, running back, and wide receiver.

“My whole rallying cry has been honestly, everybody thinks we won because of Gage, and he certainly had a lot to do with that, but your mindsets need to be that we are more than that one player, we’re a program,” says Riverside Head Football Coach Kevin Dizer.

Riverside returns 12 starters this fall, 6 on each side of the ball.

Offensively, the Rebels will lean on Junior Quarterback Luke Hymel and All-State Running Back Elijah Davis.

Last season, Hymel threw for 900 yards and 9 touchdowns. Davis ran for almost 1,300 yards and 14 touchdowns.

“Elijah is extremely good. He’s one of the more talented guys we’ve had at Riverside. He’s strong, fast, a big back and we are looking for a progression out of him as well. Kind of the same was Gage was able to help Luke, he was able to help take a lot of pressure off Elijah. our offense is only going to be as good as those two guys step up and I think they’re both up for the challenge. I know they’re both physically capable and now mentally they’ve just got to prepare themselves for the rest of the summer and be ready to go for the season,” says Dizer.

Head Coach Kevin Dizer says that while the team only returns 4 seniors, they bring back 16 players that have seen significant playing time. 

“We are going to be young in certain spots, but we’ve got experience in every group on the team. Defensive line we’ve got a couple coming back, linebacker we’ve got one or two, secondary we’ve got one or two. So, it’s kind of spread out across the team. There isn’t just any one spot that was completely depleted,” says Dizer.

Experience that will be needed early and often as Riverside hosts Newman and Belle Chasse with road trips to Albany, Southern Lab, and St. Thomas Aquinas.

For their full schedule, click here.

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