White Castle playoff run ends against No. 2 Homer

Staff Report

White Castle hoped a repeat showdown against Homer in the Class 1A quarterfinals would lead to an early Christmas gift for the Bulldog football program.

White Castle running back Jason Williams tries to fend off a flock of Homer defenders in quarterfinal playoff action last Friday.

Instead, Homer used a high-powered offense and a stingy defense to play Scrooge in White Castle’s quest for its second state championship since 2010.

No. 2 seed Homer held the No. 10 Bulldogs to 88 yards total offense -- 73 rushing and 15 passing -- in a 40-6 victory last Friday at Rocky Ourso Jr. Memorial Stadium. The victory came one year after the Pelicans edged out White Castle, 15-13, in the quarterfinal round.

Turnovers plagued the Bulldogs much of the night. Six interceptions and three fumbles only made the task tougher for WCHS.

Homer’s Deron Donnell blocks White Castle wide receiver Derrick Tate on a pass in Class 1A quarterfinal action last Friday.

“Not to take anything away from Homer, but we had some self-inflicted things that really hurt us,” White Castle head coach Marc Brown said. “We wilted under the pressure, lost our composure, and we made a lot of mistakes.”

Jacob Green, who tallied 58 yards rushing for the Bulldogs, notched the only White Castle touchdown off a 3-yard run in the third quarter.

Homer managed to get all the mileage they could get from a 265-mile, four-hour road trip from Claiborne Parish, less than a half-hour from the Arkansas border.

The Pelicans led, 13-0, at halftime and tacked on one TD in the third before the Bulldogs got on the board.

Back-to back interceptions and fumbles in the second quarter allowed Homer enough leeway to hold back White Castle in the second quarter.

Officials called back quarterback Hakeem Young’s 59-yard scamper in the second quarter. Meanwhile, WCHS made a solid offensive effort in the third quarter that got them to the Homer 1-yard line before the Pelican defense stopped the Bulldog drive.

“To me, that’s where the game swung on us,” he said. “That killed our momentum.

“It’s the process you go through when you try to build a program,” Brown said. “I’m proud of the guys and the staff for getting us where we are, and we’ll work on going further next season.”

Homer took a 7-0 lead in the first quarter when Tekelvionta Kidd scored on a 13-yard pass from Devontae Champ. They combined for a 7-yard TD in the second stanza.

White Castle held Homer to only one TD in the third quarter off an Elyjay Curry 31-yard run. Curry broke loose for a 7-yarder in the third and a 48-yard sprint in the fourth.

A turnover delivered the final blow for White Castle when Lamichael Greer scored on a 25-yard interception return in the fourth that capped Pelican scoring.

The game marked the high school football finale for seniors Jacob Breen, Derrick Tate, Damarcus Favorite, Jason Williams, Hakeem Young, Emond Brown, Frederick Williams and Jaelin Rodrigue.