Airline’s season came to an end with a 21-17 loss to the Ponchatoula Green Wave Friday night in the first round of the Class 5A playoffs at Airline Stadium, but the Vikings didn’t go down without a fight.
With his team trailing by four with 47 seconds left and no time outs, Thomas McKain completed passes to D’Juan Byrd, Coby McGee and Cameron Howell to move the Vikings to the Green Wave 25 with nine seconds left.
McKain also completed a pass inside the 20 with the receiver going out of bounds with 4 seconds left. That would’ve given Airline a good shot at completing a game-winning pass in the end zone.
But a holding penalty moved the ball back, and McKain’s Hail Mary on the final play never really had a chance.
Airline closed a season that began with seven straight wins 7-4. Ponchatoula improved to 8-3 and will host top-seeded West Monroe in the second.
The game was close throughout with Ponchatoula leading 14-10 halftime lead.
Gabe Rodriguez kicked a 27-yard field for the Vikings, and Shun’Cee Thomas sprinted 46 yards for a score.
After the Green Wave went up 21-10 late in the third quarter, McGee took the ensuing kickoff 86 yards for a touchdown.
Airline had a golden opportunity early in the fourth when Bryson Vance recovered a fumble, but the Vikings couldn’t capitalize. Thomas, who went over 1,000 yards for the season, appeared headed for a long gain down the sideline but couldn’t keep his feet.
Ponchatoula, whose option offense was efficient throughout the game, picked up a late first down that allowed the Green Wave to run several minutes off the clock before punting. That set up Airline’s final chance.
According to the Airline roster, the game was the final one for these seniors: McKain, Byrd, Howell, Thomas, Rodriguez, DB Vertrain Allen, DB Tyrice Neal, WR Darian Germany, WR Cameron Howell, DB Xavier Johnson, RB Javarious Jones, PK Nathan Naranjo, DB Traylen Chapple, WR Dylan Clark, OL Peyton Wilhite, DL Nick Mendones, OL Chandler Vascocu, OL Nathan Block, OL Alex Villareal, OL Colton Prater, OL Lane Williams, TE Quacy Richmond, DL Ivory Spratley, DL Lamar Green, DL Tyler McCallister and DL Deondre Curry.
Barbe 33, Haughton 27: For awhile, it looked like the Haughton Bucs were going to extend head coach Rodney Guin’s tenure at the school to at least one more game.
The Bucs led the Barbe Buccaneers 27-15 at the end of third quarter in Lake Charles in a Class 5A first-round playoff game. But Barbe scored three fourth-quarter TDs, including the go-ahead one with 1:20 left.
Haughton, the No. 19 seed, finished Guin’s final season 6-5. Barbe (6-4), the No. 14 seed, visits No. 3 Destrehan in the second round.
Haughton quarterback Darius Brooks and running back Kei’Untre Normandin both played well in their final game.
Brooks rushed for 121 yards on 14 carries and scored touchdowns on runs of 2 and 1 yards.
Normandin had touchdown runs of 17 and 19 yards. Both of those came in the first half as Haughton built a 20-6 lead. He finished with 117 yards on 18 carries.
Antonio Woodfork ran three times for 59 yards and caught two passes for 52.
T’Marquise Winfield led the defense with six solo tackles and three assists. Lavonte’ Gipson had five solos and two assists. Sophomore Cade Thompson had six solos. Harrison Voight and TJ Sweeney were both in on six tackles and Garrett Paintin was in on five.
Nico Broadway made three extra-point kicks. One was blocked.
After Barbe scored first, Haughton scored 20 straight points to grab the 20-6 lead. Barbe’s second touchdown came on a punt return.
Haughton went up 27-12 on Brooks’ 1-yard run. Barbe got within eight with about 10 minutes left and tied it about four minutes later on a TD pass and two-point conversion.
According to the Haughton roster, the game was the final one for these seniors: Brooks, Normandin, Woodfork, Sweeney, RB D’Kovin Ware, DB Jeremiah Wilson, WR Damien Sears, DB Christopher Douglas, P Cole Stallcup, WR Austin Pilcher, WR Zach Gardner, OL Mason McHan, LB Chance Brown, OL Jonathan McCleksey, DL Jalen Bell, OL Dylan Waggoner, OL Pablo Delmonte, LB Ryan Jeffrey, OL Kaleb Haley, DB Dylan Holliday and OL Dallas Walls.
Oberlin 32, Plain Dealing 18: The Lions’ first season under head coach James Thurman came to an end with the Class 1A first-round playoff loss at Oberlin.
The Tigers, whose already small roster was depleted by injuries in the second half of the season, finished 3-8. Oberlin (5-6) visits top-seeded Kentwood in the second round.
According to the Plain Dealing roster, the game was the final one for these seniors: RB/DB Alex Dupree, TE/LB Herb McCauley, WR/CB Frankie Kimble, WR/CB/QB Thomas Gay, OL/LB Bijan Mitchell, OL/DL Timothy Crouch Jr., OL/DL Jarvis Harris and OL/DL Jared Harris.
Note: If a senior from one of the three Bossier Parish teams is not listed above, please email his name to firstname.lastname@example.org and it will be included.
— Russell Hedges, email@example.com