- Liberty Magnet is in its first season as a varsity football program but there is no growing pains thus far. The Patriots qualified for and won its first playoff game in its short history Friday night with a 40-28 win over Archbishop Hannan.
- Northwood-Lena celebrated a playoff victory for the first time in school history. The Gators were 0-7 all-time in playoff games and had been outscored by a total of 191 points in those losses. That losing skid came to a close with a hard-fought win over Gueydan last Friday. Northwood is making its second consecutive appearance in the state playoffs, its first back-to-back efforts since 2013-2014.
LOWER SEEDS HAVE SUCCESS IN THE FIRST WEEK OF PLAYOFF ACTION
In just the first week of high school football playoff action in Louisiana, 21 higher-seeded squads were upset throughout the nine brackets. Class 3A saw five upsets, the most amongst all brackets, while higher seeds all came out he victor in Class 1A and Division III.
Opelousas Catholic was the highest seed through each class and division to suffer defeat at the hands of a lower seed. The Vikings, ranked No. 3, were upset by No. 14 St. Frederick. Denham Springs, a No. 27 seed in Class 5A, was the lowest ranked school to score an upset when the Yellow Jackets upended Central-BR, 42-14.
STORYLINES BY CLASS
- Captain Shreve and Denham Springs have not advanced to the quarterfinals since Ronald Reagan was in office. A win on Friday would send the Gators into the quarterfinal round for the first time since 1983 while the Yellow Jackets are hoping to advance for the first time since 1985. Friday’s upset victory over Central High was Denham Springs first playoff triumph since 2018.
- Ruston hopes to extend its streak of quarterfinal appearances to four this week when they host red-hot Benton at “Hoss” Garrett Stadium. The Bearcats are primed for another deep run this season with the goal of making it back to the state title game for the first time in over two decades.
- Chalmette scored its first playoff victory since 2004 last Friday. The Owls are now tasked with taking on traditional power West Monroe at home. The Rebels hold a 2-0 advantage over Chalmette in the postseason with wins in 2010 and 2020.
- Woodlawn of Baton Rouge continues to make impressive strides under head coach Marcus Randall. The Panthers scored their first playoff win since 2010 last Friday over a talented Natchitoches Central squad. Woodlawn must now attempt to knock of Destrehan on the road this week. Destrehan has reached at least the quarterfinal round over the last three seasons.
- Belle Chasse has, perhaps, the longest trip for a playoff football game this week. The Cardinals must travel over six hours for a 2nd round matchup with Huntington at Shreveport’s Independence Stadium. Both programs have enjoyed success in 2021 but hope to make more history on Friday. The Raiders are looking to advance to the quarterfinals for the first time since 2009 while Belle Chasse hopes to upset the favored home team for a chance at a quarterfinal appearance, its first since winning state in 2008.
- Opelousas took home its first playoff victory in three years with a 57-42 upset win at South Lafourche last Friday. The Tigers will now host the favorited Warren Easton squad out of New Orleans. A win would give Opelousas its first trip back to the quarterfinal round in eight seasons.
- A District 1-4A rematch is set to go down in Stonewall Friday night as North DeSoto hosts Northwood of Shreveport. The Griffins hope to avenge its loss from the regular season but more importantly secure its first trip back to the quarterfinals since 2015.
- Wossman pulled off a 34-29 upset of Erath on the road last Friday, its first postseason victory in three years. The Wildcats have a chance to earn its first trip to the quarterfinals since 1996 should they be able to knock off No. 2 Abbeville. Wossman boasts one of Class 3A’s toughest schedules this season with its four losses coming to teams who are a combined 33-5 on the year.
- Westlake and West Feliciana each scored playoff wins for the first time since the 2017 season when they both went on the road and scored upset wins. The Rams will host No. 1 Sterlington Friday night while West Feliciana welcomes No. 4 Iowa to town.
- Abbeville has had a magical season under second year coach Rod Moy and hope that the run does not end on Friday. The Wildcats are one win away from reaching the third round for the first time since 2001. History is sure to be made whether its an Abbeville victory or a Wossman triumph.
- Cyril Crutchfield has Bogalusa rolling in his first season at the helm. The Lumberjacks scored their first playoff victory since 2015 in a convincing win over Jennings. Sophomore quarterback Ashton Levi has thrown for over 2,600 yards and 29 touchdowns so far this season.
- Avoyelles seeks to rewrite the history book Friday night in its 2nd round matchup against Winnfield. The Mustangs are vying for a chance to reach the quarterfinal round for the first time in school history. Under head coach Andy Boone, Avoyelles has become a program that opponents have learned to respect. The Mustangs do not punt, attempt field goals and will try onside kicks. They battle district foe Winnfield for the second time this season, a squad they defeated 40-12 back in September.
- North Caddo has alot at stake when it makes the trip down south for a 2nd round duel with DeQuincy. The Titans are one win away from a quarterfinal appearance for the first time since 1973. The Tigers won their first playoff game since 2018 and hope to extend its season one more week with what would be considered a huge upset over the fiery North Caddo squad. Will the Titans be able to overcome the long trip and take care of business?
- A win on Friday would also give Rosepine its first quarterfinal appearance in school history. The Eagles welcome Red River to town on Friday for what is sure to be a shootout.
- A pair of squads hope to punch their ticket to the quarterfinals for the first time in their history. Delta Charter and Slaughter Charter are just a few seasons into their varsity football programs but wins on Friday would advance them into the third round since joining the LHSAA. Delta Charter faces Basile while Slaughter hosts West St. John.
- LaSalle, the No. 7 ranked team in Class 1A, hosts White Castle on Friday night for a chance to earn its first trip to the state quarterfinals for the first time since 1956. The Tigers have made seven straight trips to the playoffs.
- Lincoln Prep hopes to upset Haynesville at Red Franklin – Memorial Stadium Friday night for its first trip back to the quarterfinals since 2009, when the school was named Grambling Lab. The Panthers lost to the Golden Tornado, 43-12, in district play back during the regular season.
- Despite a turbulent season that included a hurricane devastating the area, Vandebilt Catholic looks to once again defy the odds by defeating Loyola Prep to reach the state semi-finals for the first time since 2007. The Terriers dominated St. Louis Catholic, 35-18, last week but must now make the long way up to Shreveport for its matchup with the Flyers.
- Speaking of Loyola Prep, the Flyers are also seeking to make history this week with a win over the visiting Vandebilt Catholic. It was 1998 when the Shreveport school last played in a semi-final game and win this week would propel the Flyers into a showdown with the winner of the University Lab/De La Salle contest.
- Episcopal is seeking its first appearance in the semi-finals since the 2002 season. The Knights are tasked with slowing down the Arch Manning led offense of Newman at home this Friday.
- Sacred Heart last played in a semi-final contest back in 1967, the same year it won a state title. The Trojans have a chance to advance to the final four this week should they upend the mighty Calvary Baptist squad on the road.
- St. Frederick went on the road last week as the No. 14 seed and took down No. 3 Opelousas Catholic. If the Warriors can provide one more upset over Vermilion Catholic on Friday, it will advance them into the semi-finals for the first time since 2013, the same year that they participated in the Division IV state title game. Who defeated them for the title? Vermilion Catholic.