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High school football: Week 7 games

Here is a quick look at Week 7 games involving Bossier Parish teams. All games are Friday night at 7. (Note: A schedule and column in the Wednesday, Oct. 26, print edition that had the Haughton-Southwood game Thursday night were erroneous.)

Airline (5-1, 3-0 1-5A) at Parkway (4-2, 2-1): The Vikings will be looking for their first victory over the Panthers since 2012. Parkway won 23-21 last season, rallying from an early deficit and then holding off a late Airline comeback. The game was marred by penalties as the teams combined for 17 in the first half alone.

Airline will be looking to avoid a letdown after last week’s 22-19 victory over previously undefeated Haughton. The Vikings debuted at No. 7 in the LSWA Class 5A poll.

Alex Garcia, the parish’s leading passer, threw for 337 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions. Devin Bilbo caught two TD passes. Daniel Smith scored the go-ahead touchdown with just over four minutes to play, breaking multiple tackles on a 64-yard catch-and-run.

The Vikings defense was dominant in the first half. In the third quarter, Haughton’s explosive offense made some big plays and scored three touchdowns. But Airline kept the Bucs out of  the end zone in the fourth.

Parkway is coming off a 14-13 win over Byrd. The Panthers jumped out to a 14-0 lead and then held off the Jackets with a strong defensive effort.

Sophomore Rontavious Richmond rushed for 174 yards on 29 carries.

Airline is the favorite but this is a big rivalry game so anything’s possible.

Interesting side note: New Airline principal Justin James is a former assistant principal at Parkway. His sons Jacob and Josh are former Airline football and baseball standouts. They are in their first year as assistant coaches at Parkway.

Southwood (0-6, 0-3 1-5A) at Haughton (5-1, 2-1): Southwood is probably a good opponent for Haughton to have coming off its first loss. The Cowboys are struggling as they have in past years. They lost to Natchitoches Central 35-0 last week.

Haughton won 47-22 last year.

If the Bucs take care of business as expected, head coach Jason Brotherton can rest his starters in the second half looking ahead to next week’s showdown with Captain Shreve.

To Haughton’s credit, the Bucs fought back against Airline in the second half after a lackluster performance on offense in the first.

Matthew Whitten made two nice touchdown catches on passes from Peyton Stovall. The Bucs worked a trick play to perfection with receiver CJ McWilliams passing to Stovall for a touchdown on fourth down.

The defense played well but gave up three big plays. If not for Daniel Smith’s great effort, Haughton could still be undefeated.

Benton (3-3, 0-3) vs. Byrd (1-5, 1-2) at Lee Hedges Stadium: This is the first football game between the schools.

With three straight losses and the district championship no longer in play, the Tigers still have a chance to finish the regular season strong and make the playoffs in their first season in Class 5A.

According to louisianasportsline.com, Benton is No. 30 in the 5A power rankings. The top 32 at the end of the regular season make the playoffs.

Benton has struggled in its move up to District 1-5A. Last week, the Tigers were simply no match for a talented, experienced Captain Shreve squad in a 58-14 loss.

Clint Lasiter, who was 10-4 since becoming the starting quarterback the third game of last season, moved to defense. Sophomore Caleb Cassidy made his first start at quarterback. Cassidy is a proven winner. He led Benton to the eighth-grade district title two years ago and was named Offensive MVP on the Coaches’ All-District team.

He put forth a game effort against Shreve, throwing the first two touchdown passes of his career. But the offense was ineffective for the most part after scoring an early touchdown.

The Tigers have given up numerous big plays this season. The defense will be facing a Byrd option offense that likes to keep it on the ground and eat the clock with long drives. Last week in a 14-13 loss to Parkway, Byrd went with sophomore Logan Pons at quarterback after veteran Cameron Felt suffered an injury the previous game.

If Benton can control the ball some and keep the Jackets from breaking big runs, the Tigers will have a chance to end their three-game slide.

Bossier (5-1, 0-1 1-3A) vs. Loyola College Prep (5-1, 1-0) at Messmer Stadium: This is the first meeting between the two schools since 2012.

Loyola is coming off a 36-28 victory over Green Oaks in its district opener. The Flyers’ only loss was 47-21 against Class 4A Huntington in Week 5.

Bossier fell to North Webster 35-28 last week in its district opener in Springhill.

The Bearkats raced to an early 14-0 lead, but the Knights rallied and took the lead in the second half.

Bossier tied it at 28 with 1:30 left to play. Unfortunately for the Bearkats, the Knights scored on a big play seconds later to regain the lead.

James Davis had one of the top individual performances of the season. He intercepted four passes in the first half, returning one for a touchdown.

North Webster held Bossier to a season-low 159 yards rushing, but Cole Beeson had a season-high 167 through the air. Receiver Makhi Tanner also had a big game with more than 100 yards.

This game looks like a tossup.

Ringgold (1-5, 1-2 1-1A) at Plain Dealing (3-3, 1-2): The Lions ended a two-game slide with a 42-13 win over Lincoln Prep last week.

Ringgold lost to Homer 72-16. The Redskins’ lone win was against first-year program Magnolia Charter 40-14 in Week 4. In its five losses, Ringgold has allowed an average of 58.8 points.

Plain Dealing trailed Lincoln Prep 7-6 at the half then outscored the Panthers 36-6 in the second.

Quarterback Ken Gay ran for two touchdowns and passed for one. Ladavious Scott, who sat out Week 5’s loss to Arcadia with a shoulder injury, also had a big game.

The Lions got a boost from the return of big two-way lineman Duranczk Newton from an injury.

Plain Dealing is a big favorite and should get its fourth win.

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