Home Sports-Free Hedges: Parish teams face challenges in second-round games

Hedges: Parish teams face challenges in second-round games


The Parkway Panthers, Benton Tigers and Plain Dealing Lions advanced to the second round of the LHSAA state high school football playoffs last week.
All three will be on the road Friday in the second round.
The Airline Vikings and Haughton Bucs saw their seasons come to an end.
Parkway, the No. 4 seed in Class 5A, routed No. 29 Captain Shreve 60-21 at Preston Crownover Stadium.
The Panthers (10-1) travel to Baton Rouge Friday to face No. 20 Central (7-4), which defeated No. 13 Live Oak 17-0.
Benton, the No. 10 seed in Class 4A, rolled past No. 23 Ellender 63-28 at Tiger Stadium.
The Tigers (9-2) visit No. 7 Rayne (10-1) Friday. Rayne knocked off No. 26 Lakeshore 49-18.
Plain Dealing, the No. 13 seed in Class 1A, crushed No. 20 South Cameron 44-14 in Plain Dealing. The Lions (5-6) visit No. 4 Oberlin (9-2), a 43-0 winner over No. 29 North Central.
In Class 5A, No. 21 Airline dropped a 45-35 decision to No. 12 Sulphur in Sulphur, and No. 24 Haughton fell to No. 9 John Ehret 48-27 in New Orleans.
The Parkway-Shreve game went about like the teams’ first district meeting.
The Gators scored first, but the Panthers dominated after that with 53 straight points.
Parkway quarterback Justin Rogers, receiver Terrace Marshall Jr., running back E.J. Williams and running back/receiver Robert McKnight performed as they have all season and were simply too much for the Gators.
The defense consistently gave the offense good field position. Malcolm Banks set up one TD with an interception return.
Parkway will be facing a Central team that finished tied for fourth in District 4-5A.
Central shut out Live Oak, a 4-5A rival, one week after losing to the Eagles 41-2.
Xavier Lewis rushed for 214 yards on 17 carries, according to the Baton Rouge Advocate. Freshman quarterback Sam Kenerson rushed for 85 yards.
I wouldn’t be surprised if Central gets off to a good start like Shreve did. But I expect the Panthers to be at home Thanksgiving week for the quarterfinals facing No. 5 Landry-Walker, which plays Sulphur in the second round.
Benton jumped out to a 21-0 first-quarter lead against Ellender and led 35-6 at the half. Quarterback Garrett Hable, running back Jermaine Newton, and receivers John Westmoreland and Doyle Adams Jr. all had big games.
The defense did a good job of containing Ellender’s talented Daveontavean Martin, a Tulane commitment who alternated between quarterback and receiver, although he made a few big plays.
The Tigers are playing a Rayne team that shared the District 3-4A title with Leesville with a 4-1 mark.
The Wolves’ only loss was to LaGrange 15-14 in their district opener in Week 6. LaGrange lost to North DeSoto 35-29 in the first round.
Rayne runs a Wing-T offense. The Tigers got some experience against the Wing-T in a victory over Bossier in Week 10.
Rayne played some close games early in the season, winning three games by seven or fewer points. The Wolves have scored at least 48 points in the last four games against relatively weak opponents.
According to AcadiaParishToday.com, Rayne had almost 500 total yards against Lakeshore.
Trent Winbush led Wolves with 124 yards on 15 carries and three touchdowns. Darien Harmon rushed for 98 yards and two touchdowns.
It won’t be easy, but I expect Benton to pull off the upset. The Tigers should be able to put some points on the board.
It may take a little while for the defense to get a handle on Rayne’s offense. If the Wolves can put together long drives and keep the Benton offense off the field, it could be close at the end.
Plain Dealing looked sharp on both sides of the ball against South Cameron. Keldrick Carper scored two rushing TDs and caught a touchdown pass.
Derreon Washington scored on offense and defense. The Tigers may not have Washington Friday, though. In a scary moment late in the game, he was knocked unconscious on a South Cameron two-point conversion attempt, suffering a possible concussion and stinger, according to coach James Thurman.
Friday’s second-round game is a rematch of last year’s first-round game won by Oberlin 32-18.
Like South Cameron, Oberlin is a member of District 4-1A. The Tigers won the district with a 7-0 mark, defeating South Cameron 52-21 in the process.
Thurman said the game was close at the half. He believes the Lions have a chance at the upset if they can force some turnovers like they did against South Cameron.
Airline looked well on its way to advancing against Sulphur, leading 28-10 early in the third quarter. But the Tors, led by running back J’Cobi Skinner (259 yards), scored five straight touchdowns to rally for the victory.
The Vikings finished 6-5 but were in every game except one, a 45-7 loss to 1-5A champ Evangel. Evangel defeated every other 1-5A team just as bad.
“Just pleased with the growth of our program,” Airline coach Bo Meeks said. “Obviously, not pleased with the final record, but as far as the way we played and gave ourselves chances, I thought it was a successful season.
“Really proud of our seniors. We didn’t have a lot of guys coming back in many spots and they stepped up and provided really good leadership for us. Also, I thought our coaching staff did a good job of preparing, especially with so many guys in new roles, getting them ready to play.”
With players like quarterback Brad Fream, receiver Coby McGee, running back Cameron “JoJo” Davis and linebacker Zylon Newson expected back next season, the future looks bright.
Haughton fell behind early against John Ehret and trailed 34-6 early in the third quarter. The Bucs bounced back with a couple of a third-quarter touchdowns but it wasn’t enough against a very good team.
Junior quarterback Cameron Townsend passed for 155 yards, including a 47-yard TD to Josh Lister.
The Bucs finished 5-6 in Jason Brotherton’s first season as head coach.
Haughton played a couple of its best games in the first half of the season, handing District 1-4A champion Woodlawn its only loss of the season, 40-6, and falling to 1-4A runner-up Minden 23-20 after leading in the fourth quarter. The Crimson Tide has lost only one game.
The Bucs either led or were tied with District 1-5A foes Byrd, Airline and Parkway at the half but faltered in the final two quarters in each game.

Russell Hedges is Sports Editor of the Bossier Press-Tribune. He may be reached at rhedges@bossierpress.com

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