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Parkway vies for state title Saturday

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For the first time, a Bossier Parish team is playing for a state championship in the Superdome.

The Parkway Panthers (13-0) face the Acadiana Wreckin’ Rams (13-1) of Lafayette Saturday night at 8 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The game will be broadcast on 95.7 FM.

Parkway is the first Bossier Parish school to make it to the Superdome since the LHSAA started playing all of its state championship game there in 1981. The Panthers are the first parish team to make it to an LHSAA title game since the Haughton Bucs in 1978. If they win, they will be the first to win a state championship since the 1977 Haughton squad coached by Bobby Ray McHalffey.

Acadiana is a traditional power in Class 5A. The Wreckin’ Rams won the state title in 2006 and 2010. They were runners-up in 2005 and 2007.

Students and supporters gathered at Parkway High School Thursday for a send off pep rally for the football team’s trip to New Orleans for the title game.
Students and supporters gathered at Parkway High School Thursday for a send off pep rally for the football team’s trip to New Orleans for the title game.

Based on seedings, the Panthers will be a slight underdog. Acadiana went into the playoffs as the No. 1 seed and Parkway was No. 2. In the final LSWA 5A poll, Parkway was ranked No. 2 and Acadiana No. 3. The top-ranked team, St. Augustine, lost to Rummel in the Division I semifinals.

Acadiana has defeated Slidell (35-7), Ponchatoula (49-7), Barbe (27-17) and Destrehan (35-7) en route to the title game. Parkway has defeated Captain Shreve (41-7), East St. John (52-25), Zachary (49-34) and Covington (28-27) in the playoffs.

The game will be a contrast in styles. Acadiana employs a ball control triple-option offense. Parkway runs a wide-open, up-tempo spread.

The Rams are led by pair of running backs who are also brothers, Edward and De’Edward Cormier. Parkway is led by senior quarterback Brandon Harris, an LSU signee.

Acadiana has allowed only 38 points in the playoffs. Parkway has averaged 47.5. The 28-point output last week was a season low for the Panthers.

Acadiana lost to eventual state champion West Monroe 24-0 in the second round last year. Parkway lost to eventual runner-up Barbe 45-35 in the quarterfinals.