- Ben Mintz
Football is a brutal sport with no karma or mercy for anyone. This was sadly on display in week 1 of high school football as superstar Parkway QB and TCU Commit Justin Rogers dislocated his knee in the 1st quarter of the Panthers 35-8 win over BTW. Rogers, ranked as the #8 high school QB in the country, is out for the season and will have to use a redshirt year in fall of 2018 to recover. Kudos to TCU for doing the honorable thing and honoring his scholarship. Football is a cold bottom line business and schools often pull scholarships for injuries. Parkway must now get sophomore QB Amani Larry ready in a hurry for Saturday’s Battle on the Border Showdown with Pearl, one of the top teams in the state of Mississippi. 1st year head coach Neil May and the Panthers entered the season in the top 10 in 5A, will they be able to overcome Rogers injury?
Byrd defeated Calvary in a wild game 42-32 last Thursday night at Lee Hedges Stadium despite the Cavs gaining over 600 yards of offense. Coach Mike Suggs and the Yellow Jackets overcame a 17-7 early deficit by controlling the tempo of the game in the 2nd half with their ball control veer offense. This win was a huge momentum builder for Byrd coming off a 4-7 2016 season as they get ready to take on Moss Point (MS) Saturday night at the Indy Bowl in the Battle on the Border. Despite losing, Cavs QB Cade Hart and RB Kordavian Washington both had massive games and will continue to light up scoreboards all season. Calvary travels to Farmerville to take on Union Friday night.
In other action around the area, Airline shutout Union 30-0 at the newly named MD Raye Field in Bossier City. The Fightin’ Farmers were without their starting QB Lawrence Gloson and could not move the ball against the Vikings defense. Airline Star WR Coby McGee had a 41 yard TD reception on a 4th and 7 in the 2nd quarter showing he has fully recovered from last year’s torn ACL. Airline travels to northeast Louisiana to take on Bastrop on Friday night at 7pm. That game will be live on The Ticket 100.7 FM/1340 AM with Mac Ledbetter and myself on the call.
The defending Division 1 State Champion Evangel Eagles made a bigtime statement with a 14-6 win on the road at national power East St. Louis (Ill). As advertised, the Eagles defense shut down the top team in 7A football in Illinois on the road. The Eagles follow this win up with a road trip to Texas powerhouse Allen Friday night to try to avenge last year’s 45-10 week 1 loss. If the Eagles pull off a 2nd straight monster road win, I expect to see them in the National top 25 next week. The only question about the Eagles remains on the offensive side of the ball where they are young this season.
In other action in the area, Loyola fell on the road 20-15 at Cedar Creek. Haynesville defeated North Webster 19-7 in a defensive battle. Benton came out strong and destroyed Wossman 49-7. Watch out for Reynolds Moore’s squad this season led by 4 year starting QB Garrett Hables. Defending 1-4a District Champion Woodlawn crushed Carroll in Monroe 44-14. Captain Shreve defeated Green Oaks 48-20. North Desoto beat 5A Natchitoches Central 28-7 in a game that was not as close as the final score. Northwood ran the score up on North Caddo 77-7 and Bossier won at Madison (Tallulah) 42-28.
Tomorrow I will be back with a preview of the 2017 Landers Dodge Battle on the Border at Independence Stadium that starts Friday night with West Monroe taking on Booker T Washington (Tulsa, OK) at 6pm.