Karr Cougars win fourth consecutive state championship

Karr Cougars win fourth consecutive state championship
The Karr Cougars held off Warren Easton to win a fourth straight Class 4A state championship. (Source: Chris Hagan)


Immediately after the game, Edna Karr head coach Brice Brown called the win one of their toughest in his 14 years with the Cougars. The 35-34 final score seemed improbable after a two-score Cougars’ lead at halftime and momentum, but Warren Easton refused to go down without a fight.

The game started with Karr faking a punt on their first touchdown drive. That conversion set up a Leonard Kelly to Aaron Anderson touchdown. But that’s officially when things got wild. On the ensuing kickoff, Alred Luke Jr. returned the kick for a touchdown and tied the game up, 8-8.

On the kickoff after that touchdown, for a second, it looked like Anderson would match Luke and how his kick return as well, but a fumble gave Easton the ball back deep in Karr territory. They capitalized with an Aashad Clayton touchdown to take a 14-8 lead.

Still, the Cougars didn’t go away, and scored 22 unanswered points with a Leonard Kelly touchdown run, Leonte Richardson touchdown run, and then a Destin Refuge interception that he returned for a touchdown. They had everything going their way heading to halftime.

But the second half was a huge effort from the Eagles. On their opening drove of the third quarter, Clayton led his offense right down the field with some big runs, and a second touchdown cut into the lead Cougars lead and made it a one score game. However, unable to keep the Cougars out of the endzone, a touchdown response gave them a 13-point cushion, 35-22, going into the fourth quarter.

First, Clayton capped off his huge night with a third touchdown to make it 35-28. Then Easton’s defense made the stop of the game. On a fourth and goal from the one yard line, they stopped a Richardson run that likely would all but sealed the win for the Cougars.

From there, they drove the field. But instead of Clayton carrying the load, it was quarterback Dayshawn Holmes in the air and on the ground getting the job done. His touchdown run would make it a 35-34 game.

This is where things got even wilder.

Easton head coach Jerry Phillips says it’s his history to go for two, and that’s what they did. But the attempt was sniffed out by Karr, and the Eagles still trailed by one with less than two minutes to play.

So what do they do? Recover the onside kick. Executed to perfection, James Alridge made the recovery to give Warren Easton new life with a minute to play. However, on the first play of the drive, Holmes tossed a deep ball down the sideline and was intercepted by Jacob Livas. That sealed the game for the Cougars to escape a wild second half with their fourth straight state title.

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