The Many Tigers and the Homer Pelicans will be making return trips to Caesar’s Superdome for Ochsner’s LHSAA Prep Classic. Many will be making its fourth consecutive state championship and competing for the Division III Nonselect title. Homer will be competing for the Division IV Nonselect title and making it for the second consecutive year after an 82-year drought before last year’s Class A title run.
Homer 38, Mangham 18
The Homer Pelicans (10-3) had their hands full with the Mangham Dragons (10-2). Mangham opened with a touchdown and another later in the quarter with another touchdown. Homer Pelicans defense scored first as Jamarquese Hampton had a scoop-n-score to close the gap to 12-6 at the end of the first quarter. Mangham opened the second quarter by reaching the end zone on a 25-yard run by Jalen Williams to once more take the lead at 18-6. Andrevious Buggs connected with Katrevick Banks on a 43-yard pass. Buggs struck again on a 15-yard touchdown pass to BJ Hamilton to tie at 18-18. The two remained tied to halftime.
The stalemate continued in the third quarter. Buggs gave the Pels its first lead of the game on an option run in the fourth quarter. The defense struck again as Walteze Champ for a scoop-n-score on a 62-yard return. With the two-point conversion, Homer extended the lead to 32-18. Elyjay Curry finished out the win with a 27-yard touchdown run to send the Pelicans back to the ‘Dome.
Many 32, St. James 13
The Many Tigers (12-0) are getting used to New Orleans in December as they will return for the fourth consecutive year with a win over St. James (10-3). Many jumped out early with a 13-yard run from Trent Williams. Many held on for the 7-0 lead to the end of the first quarter. Williams crashed into the end zone on back-to-back 3-yard touchdown runs. Many jumped out to a 21-0 halftime lead.
St. James made a run at a comeback. The Wildcats scored on a 13-yard reception to Khai Prean. Kaden Williams had a 7-yard touchdown run. St. James closed the gap to 21-13. Tackett Curtis cut the surge down with a 58-yard touchdown run. Curtis topped it off with a two-point conversion. Many led 29-13 after three quarters. Deacon Lafolette added a 27-yard field goal in the fourth quarter to finalize the 32-13 win.
Oak Grove 42, Haynesville 7
Oak Grove denied an all-Claiborne Parish party in the Division IV state championship as they eliminated the Golden Tornado on Friday. The Tors ran into a dangerous Oak Grove team that had knocked off No. 1 Kentwood the week before. This was the second meeting between the two this season as Haynesville won the previous meeting. The second meeting saw the Tigers piling up 323 rushing yards. Haynesville also fell on hard times with four turnovers. Alonzo Jackson was the sole touchdown for the Tors in 5 carries for 92 yards. Haynesville completed their season with back-to-back years of finishing in the semifinals.
State Championship Previews
Division III Nonselect State Championship
No. 1 Many Tigers (13-0) v No. 3 Union Parish Fightin’ Farmers (12-1)
Saturday, December 10 3:30 PM
The Many Tigers may be making their fourth consecutive trip to the finals but the Farmers are making their third consecutive trip. The Farmers are hoping to say the third time is a charm on the back of LSU commit Trey Holly. Holly holds the Louisiana All-Time rushing record which he broke this season. Holly has accumulated 2580 yards (avg 198.5 yards per game) and 37 touchdowns for the season. Holly had one game under 100 yards this season against Homer, a defensively strong team. Many surely have a strong defense with USC commit Tackett Curtis. The Tigers have other weapons in Jamarlyn Gardner, Trent Williams, and Jeremiah James. Will the Farmers finally get to add the title champion on the third try or will Many be champion for the second time in three years? Should be a classic in the Dome.
Division IV Nonselect State Championship
No. 2 Homer Pelicans (10-3) v No. 8 Oak Grove Tigers (11-3)
Thursday, December 8 3:30 PM
The Tigers are familiar with Claiborne Parish as this is the third game against one this season. This is a matchup of momentum. The Pelicans had a rough ending of the season losing two of three games to an undefeated Prescott, AR and then losing a district title to Glenbrook. The Haynesville matchup looked bleak until a late second-half turnaround to squeak by a 28-27 win. Homer garnered a No. 2 seed and a first-round bye. Homer's defense has been on fire picking apart teams reaching a return trip to the finals. Oak Grove lost a key game against Mangham that cost them a district title. The Tigers ended the regular season on a four-game streak averaging 51 points a game. They continued in the playoffs with wins over Centerville and Welsh. Oak Grove then knocked out the No. 1 seed Kentwood followed by No. 4 Haynesville. Will the Homer defense strike hard against the potent Oak Grove offense? The Pels cannot risk getting behind because the Tiger offense could outpace
them and run out of time to catch up. The Pels can score on defense also and that’s an additional advantage for Homer.