Week 3 schedule
Ruston at Airline, 7
Woodlawn at Haughton, 7
Pulaski Academy at Parkway, 7
Benton at Tioga, 7
Logansport at Bossier, 7
Plain Dealing at Northwood, 7
Week Two was undoubtedly a tough one for Bossier Parish high school football teams. Only the Haughton Buccaneers and Parkway Panthers came out unscathed.
Haughton defeated Booker T. Washington 40-14 at home. Parkway did not play.
Elsewhere, the Airline Vikings lost their second close game in a row, falling to Bastrop 18-13 at home. The Benton Tigers dropped a 26-7 decision to Alexandria Senior High at home. The Bossier Bearkats lost to North Caddo 35-12 on the road. The Plain Dealing Lions suffered a 14-6 home loss to Bolton.
A year ago, the five teams went 5-0 against the same opponents. It wasn’t a perfect week as Parkway lost in the Battle on the Border.
The great thing about the early part of the season is that there’s always next week and the chance for redemption. The first district games aren’t even until Week Four.
In Friday’s action, Haughton (2-0) hosts Woodlawn (1-1), Airline (0-2) hosts Ruston (1-1), Parkway (1-0) hosts Little Rock, Ark., Pulaski Academy (2-0), Benton (0-2) is at Tioga (2-0), Bossier (1-1) hosts Logansport (2-0) and Plain Dealing (1-1) visits Northwood (2-0).
Haughton played an almost flawless game offensively against BTW. The Bucs rolled up 595 total yards and didn’t punt or have a turnover.
Sophomore quarterback Peyton Stovall had only one incomplete pass in nine attempts. He threw two TD passes to CJ McWilliams and ran for another.
Keyshawn Davis went over 100 yards rushing for the second week in a row.
“Our quarterback threw the ball well, and we caught it,” coach Jason Brotherton said. “The running backs had good games. I was very pleased the offense. We were very sharp.”
Brotherton was less pleased with the defense, which gave up a big pass play and yielded some yards in the first half. But he wasn’t overly concerned.
He said it was the opposite of the 35-21 Week One win over Minden when the defense played very well and the offense struggled somewhat.
Brotherton will be looking for a complete game against Woodlawn, which handed the Bucs one of their three regular-season losses last year, 32-24.
The Knights started fast this season, defeating Carroll 39-12. But last week they fell to Captain Shreve 31-0.
Woodlawn’s top two backs left the games with injuries. The Gators held the Knights to minus-22 yards on the ground.
Head coach Jerwin Wilson has made Woodlawn a program to be reckoned with, though. The Bucs won’t take the Knights lightly.
Airline is 0-2 for the first time since 2010, the year before Bo Meeks became head coach. But the Vikings are very close to being 2-0.
Airline’s two losses have been by a combined eight points. For the second week in a row, Airline let an early lead slip away and gave up a TD very late in the first half.
The Vikings led 13-0 when Bastrop scored with just 7 seconds left.
After the Rams took the 18-13 lead in the second half, the Vikings had a couple of golden opportunities to regain the lead but couldn’t do it.
“We made a lot of plays just missed opportunities to win the game,” Meeks said. “We had a couple of chances to put it away and didn’t get it done. Hats off to them. Proud of our growth but obviously disappointed we didn’t make the plays to win.”
Things don’t get any easier with Ruston coming to M.D. Ray Field at Airline Stadium. The Bearcats handily beat Class 4A power Neville in Week One. Last week, they lost a 28-21 heartbreaker to perennial 5A power Acadiana on a Hail Mary pass on the game’s final play.
Ruston has an experienced quarterback in Eric Outley and running back in Hahsan Jackson, who had 187 yards rushing against Neville.
The Bearcats have won four of the last five in the series, but the games have been very competitive. Ruston will again play the favorite’s role, but if Airline can limit mistakes and make some strides on offense, the Vikings will have a chance to pull the upset.
Parkway will also be an underdog against Pulaski, which has won four straight Arkansas Class 5A state titles. The Bruins have lost only two games during that span.
This season, Pulaski is averaging 53 points in its first two games. The Bruins defeated Ridgway 56-35 last week. Braden Bratcher has completed 44 of 61 passes for 749 yards and nine touchdowns with just one interception.
Pulaski defeated Parkway 62-21 last season, but the Panthers were reeling from season-ending injuries to quarterback Justin Rogers and receiver Terrace Marshall Jr. It will be interesting to see how they do Friday with a healthy team and two weeks of preparation.
Benton has lost its first two games for the first time since 2013, Reynolds Moore’s first season as head coach. The Tigers struggled on offense against ASH but still had a chance down 17-7 going into the fourth quarter.
Moore made a switch at quarterback after the first three possessions, replacing senior Ken Gay with sophomore Clint Lasiter, who threw a 19-yard TD pass to Malik Antwine. Lasiter also had a couple of nice runs.
Moore said Sunday he wanted Gay to have some competition at the position because it will bring out the best in both players. He said he planned to make a decision as to who will start against Tioga based on what happens during practice.
Tioga, a member of District 3-4A, has defeated Class 3A Pine Prairie 34-6 and Class 1A Jonesboro-Hodge 26-14.
Moore believes his team isn’t far from being able to achieve the kind of success Benton fans have grown accustomed to. He said inexperience on offense has been one cause of the slow start, but he was pleased with the effort on both sides of the ball against ASH.
He also doesn’t want his young team to feel too much pressure. He said the plan is to make the trip to Tioga a fun one while still focused on the ultimate goal of getting in the win column.
Bossier hung with North Caddo in the first half, trailing 15-12. But the Rebels dominated the second.
The Bearkats failed to control the football, managing just 103 total yards.
Logansport, which has defeated Bossier two straight years, is one of the top Class 1A teams in the state. The Tigers led Lakeview 37-6 after the first quarter and coach Kevin Magee began substituting in the second as Logansport coasted to a 42-28 victory.
Two years ago, the Bearkats played the Tigers close at home. For that to happen again, Bossier will have to have some scoring drives that eat up the clock.
Plain Dealing fumbled nine times and lost five against Bolton. Despite that, the game was tied when the Bears scored the go-ahead TD midway through the fourth quarter thanks in part to an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty after a sack on third down.
The Lions will be facing a Northwood team that has about five times as many players. Not only that, coach Jim Gatlin has as much talent as any team in the area. Northwood was ranked No. 5 in the LSWA Class 4A poll going into last week’s 38-8 win over Richwood.
With about 20 players on the roster at the beginning of the season, Plain Dealing has already been hit by the injury bug. The best scenario for the Lions is to have some success in a quick game with no injuries.
Then they can begin preparations Monday for the District 1-1A opener against Ringgold, a team with a similar number of players.
Russell Hedges is Sports Editor of the Bossier Press-Tribune. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org