The Byrd Yellow Jackets handed the Haughton Bucs their first loss of the season Friday night 49-17 at Lee Hedges Stadium.
Haughton dropped to 5-1 overall and 1-1 in District 1-5A. Byrd improved to 5-1 and 2-1.
Both teams were short-handed. D’Kovin Ware, Haughton’s leading rusher on the season, sat out the game with an unspecified injury. He was on the sideline but not dressed out.
Byrd was missing starting quarterback Deuce Caston and game-breaking running back Tysen Hardman. Hardman’s backup Jalin Thomas was lost for the season last week after suffering a leg injury against Parkway.
The game looked like it was going to anything but a lopsided affair in the first quarter.
Byrd scored on its opening possession. The TD was set up by a Javier James 61-yard run.
Haughton answered with an 11-play, 66-yard drive that ended with a 29-yard Nico Broadway field goal.
The Bucs then got a break when Byrd’s punter shanked one out of bounds near midfield. A few plays later Darius Brooks hit Josh Lister in stride in the end zone for a 28-yard touchdown. Broadway’s PAT gave Haughton a 10-7 lead, which is how it stood after the first quarter.
Haughton had the momentum and a chance to add to the lead early in the second. But a Brooks’ pass in the flat fell incomplete on fourth-and-2 at the Byrd 34.
After that, it was all Jackets.
Byrd’s Tray Allen broke loose up the middle for a long run deep into Haughton territory. A few plays later, the Jackets took the lead for good at 14-10.
Things really unraveled for Haughton after that.
A high snap over the punter’s head gave Byrd a first-and-goal at the 1. The Jackets were flagged twice for illegal procedure but still scored on a 6-yard run.
On Haughton’s next possession, Byrd’s Trent Jones intercepted a pass in the flat and returned it for a touchdown. All of a sudden, it was 28-10.
On the ensuing kickoff, the Jackets recovered a squib kick. Allen raced 29 yards and it was 35-10 at the half.
That was 21 points in less than two minutes for the Jackets.
Jeremiah Wiliams scored Haughton’s lone TD of the second half on a fumble return. Byrd also scored another defensive touchdown.
The Jackets dominated the statistics, outgaining the Bucs 303-147. All of Byrd’s yardage came on the ground. Byrd attempted just two passes.
Haughton hosts parish rival Airline (6-0, 2-0) Friday. The Vikings defeated Mansfield 44-0 in a non-district game Thursday.
Northwood 23, Bossier 20: A late Bearkats rally fell short Friday night in the District 1-4A game at Northwood’s Jerry Burton Stadium.
Bossier trailed 23-0 with 9:40 left in the third quarter. But the Bearkats didn’t go quietly.
Bossier’s offense started moving the ball consistently and the defense shut down the Falcons.
Aareon Smallwood scored three touchdowns on runs of 10, 9 and 5 yards. The second TD capped an 11-play, 66-yard drive. The final one came with 1:22 left in the game.
Bossier failed to recover an onsides kick and Northwood ran out the clock.
Smallwood powered his way for 122 yards on 25 carries.
Northwood’s led 16-0 at the half. The Falcons’ lone second-half TD was set up by a fumble recovery on the third-quarter kickoff.
Bossier fell to 3-3 overall and 0-3 in 1-4A. Northwood improved to 3-3 and 1-2.
The Bearkats continue district play at home Friday against Minden (4-2, 2-1), which fell to Benton 41-34 Thursday night.
Grambling 22, Plain Dealing 16: The Lions lost a heartbreaker at home Thursday night.
After a scoreless first half, the Lions scored two TDs and two conversions in the third quarter to take a 16-0 lead. But Grambling rallied to tie it in the fourth.
The Kittens won it with a TD in overtime.
Plain Dealing dropped to 2-4 and 1-2 in District 1-1A. Grambling improved to 3-3 and 1-2.
The Lions host Ringgold (3-3, 0-3) Friday. Ringgold lost to Arcadia 26-12 in its last outing.
— Russell Hedges, firstname.lastname@example.org