High school football: Haughton’s season comes to a close with loss to No. 6 Alexandria

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The Haughton Buccaneers’ outstanding season came to an end Friday night.

The No. 11 seed Bucs fell to No. 6 Alexandria Senior High 38-6 in a Class 5A second-round game at J.L. “Butch” Stoker Stadium in Alexandria.

Haughton, which had a seven-game winning streak snapped, finished 8-2. The Bucs were runners-up to undefeated Byrd in District 1-5A at 4-1.

ASH (4-1) will visit No. 3 Zachary, a 34-7 winner over No. 14 New Iberia, in the quarterfinals.

Haughton’s two losses came against teams that now have a combined 13-1 record. The Bucs’ only regular-season loss was to Byrd 28-10 in Week 2. 

They also were able to play a full eight-game regular season thanks to some creative scheduling after cancellations caused by COVID-19, something many teams around the state were unable to do.

Haughton won a playoff game for the third straight year.

“We feel like we maximized our potential this year and probably came a lot further than anybody expected us to,” head coach Jason Brotherton said. “It was a really fun season.”

Brotherton had to replace his quarterback, top running back and top three receivers from last season’s team that reached the semifinals.

Haughton had several multi-year starters that helped the Bucs go 28-8 the last three seasons.

“It’s a senior class of really good kids, high character — great leadership from that senior bunch,” Brotherton said. “We’ll have as hard of time replacing the leadership and the character they had just as much as we’ll have a hard time replacing their talent.”

The first six minutes of Friday’s game set the tone for a tough night for the Bucs.

Haughton picked up a couple of first downs on its first possession before being hit with a holding penalty. The Bucs overcame that with a long pass inside the Trojans 40, but the play ended with a fumble recovered by ASH.

The Trojans drove to the Haughton 26 after the fumble recovery. The Bucs forced a fourth-and-11, but ASH converted it with a 13-yard pass. The Trojans scored on a run on the next play.

Haughton converted a third-and-12 on its second possession but fumbled the ball away at its 40 on the next play.

The Trojans hit a long pass and then scored on an 8-yard run. The PAT made it 14-0.

“They were a little bit better than us and then we didn’t play good on top of it to make it even worse,” Brotherton said. 

ASH dominated from there and extended the lead to 24-0 at the half. When Jarvis Newton returned the second-half kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown, what little hope the Bucs had of a second-half comeback was gone.

Haughton finished with an uncharacteristic four turnovers.

“The first half was the opposite of what we needed it to be,” Brotherton said. “We turned the ball over and we lost field position, just didn’t do the things that we have to do to be successful with what we have right now.

“But they were a good team and overmatched us at a couple of positions. We had a hard time at the line of scrimmage all night.”

Haughton averted a shutout on Keshun English’s 3-yard run with just over three minutes left in the game.

The Bucs couldn’t get their running game going, finishing with just 41 yards on 25 attempts.

Rains, who did an admirable job in his first full season as a starter, completed 13-of-21 passes for 141 yards with two interceptions.

Senior Elijah Rochon caught six passes for 90 yards. Junior Coleman Stafford had two catches for 30 yards.

Meanwhile, the Haughton defense, which was outstanding all season, had trouble stopping an ASH offense that featured several talented players.

The Trojans rolled up 319 yards with 218 of that coming on the ground.

Chris Gray had 81 yards on 10 carries. Newton had 12 for 74.

Judd Barton completed 11-of-20 passes for 102 yards and two touchdowns to Shield Taylor.