High school football: Plain Dealing falls to Montgomery in first round of 1A playoffs

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The Plain Dealing Lions’ season came to a close Friday night with a 42-0 loss to the Montgomery Tigers in the first round of the Class 1A playoffs in Montgomery.

Plain Dealing, the No. 22 seed, finished 3-8. Montgomery (7-3), the No. 11 seed, will visit No. 6 Basile in the second round.

According to stats posted on MaxPreps.com, quarterback Logan Graves and running back Mikel Auge led the Tigers.

Graves completed 8 of 11 passes for 112 yards and one touchdown. He also rushed for 54 yards and on five carries and scored two touchdowns.

Auge gained 68 yards on 12 carries and caught two passes for 53 yards, including a 46-yard touchdown grab. He also scored two rushing touchdowns.

The Lions weren’t able to get much going on offense. They hurt themselves with two interceptions and a fumble. They also had a touchdown erased by a penalty.

Coach James Thurman said the field was in bad shape with standing water in several spots.

“Defensively, we just couldn’t get our footing,” he said. “I don’t know if their cleats are better than ours or what. They were just gashing us on the run game. We were just slipping right off of them. It was just not a very good game for us.”

It was a rough season for the Lions. Thurman started out with a small roster numbers-wise. It got smaller when four players quit near midseason. Injuries further depleted the roster. The low point came in Week 7 against Arcadia when Thurman had only 17 players available, including a couple of middle schoolers.

Going into the season, Thurman figured his team would be able to win more than three games. He said it was definitely disappointing to lose eight.

But he praised the players who persevered and gave their all until the end.

“I feel like the guys we had tonight were guys that really wanted to be there and I’m proud of those guys for sticking it out,” he said. “For our kids to stick it out, not give up and keep playing just makes you proud of those kids, playing for the right reasons. They wanted to be a part of it and help their teammates.

“Every year when you lose you tell them get one more break for the seniors, and they ended their break, ‘We’re all we have.’ That was true. That was the group that came out and stuck with it and played hard to the end. Those are the guys that kind of rallied around each other. It didn’t go like we wanted it to but at the end of the day I was definitely proud of our kids and glad they fought to the very end.”