Liberty was halfway to closing out the regular season in its historical first full varsity season when Keelan Reason literally took matters into his own hands.
The Patriots, leading 27-14 over Belaire in the District 7-4A championship game, got a significant boost from Reason over a 15-second span of the third quarter that had his team’s name engraved on the district title trophy before the start of the fourth quarter.
Reason, a junior free safety, returned back-to-back interceptions for touchdowns of 37 and 50 yards, respectively, that fueled a 28-point third quarter and propelled Liberty to a 62-27 victory last Friday.
For his efforts, Reason was selected the Tiger Rag Magazine/Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Health Shining Star of the Week.
“He’s got really good ball skills,” Liberty head football coach Drey Trosclair said of Reason, who leads the team with seven interceptions this season. “The interceptions came on back-to-back plays and was a huge momentum swing for us that helped put the game out of reach.”
Liberty (8-1) received a fourth-seed will host Archbishop Hannan in the first round of the Division III state playoffs Friday at Olympia Stadium.
Reason provided Liberty with quite a lift going into the postseason with six tackles, his pair of Pick 6s, another interception on a two-point conversion attempt and recovered a fumble.
In addition, he was also part of a trick play where Reason caught a pass and then threw back to quarterback Khylan Gross that went for a 55-yard touchdown.
The career highlight moments for Reason took place on consecutive offensive plays. Both interceptions were a show of concentration, each deflected into the air with Reason in perfect position to return pick to end zone and extend his team’s lead to 41-14.
“They got the ball to start the third quarter and if they go down and score, they could make it a one-possession game,” Trosclair said. “Those two (interception returns for TDs) helped put it out of reach. He did a lot of impressive stuff on the defensive side to help us win that game.”
DANIEL BEALE, Catholic, (Completed 19 of 21 passes, 352 yards, 4 TDs), ZAE TEASETT, Scotlandville, (Accounted for 306 yards; 220 passing, 86 rushing, 3 TDs), COLE POIRRIER, St. Amant, (Accounted for 258 yards; 194 passing, 64 rushing, TD), CHANCE WILLIAMS, Scotlandville, (Rushed 22 times, 226 yards, TD), MALIK AUGUST, Tara, (Accounted for 251 yards; 126 passing, 125 rushing, 3 TDs), KALEB JACKSON, Liberty, (Accounted for 248 yards; 200 rushing, 48 receiving, 3 TDs), JA’KOBE BRYANT, Belaire, (Accounted for 226; 166 passing, 60 rushing, 2 TDs), KHYLAN GROSS, Liberty, (Accounted for 224 yards; 171 passing, 53 rushing, 3 TDs), HAYDEN HAND, Dunham, (Completed 9 of 13 passes, 216 yards, 6 TDs), DAVID JONES, Madison Prep, (Accounted for 170 yards; 90 in kickoff returns, 46 receiving, 34 rushing, TD), DAMON BLOCKER, St. Michael, (Accounted for 168 yards; 85 rushing, 83 passing, 3 TDs), SHELTON SAMPSON, JR., Catholic, (Caught 7 passes, 159 yards, 2 TDs), ELI HOLSTEIN, Zachary, (Accounted for 191 yards; 153 passing, 38 rushing, 3 TDs), ZEON CHRISS, Madison Prep, (Completed 16 of 25 passes, 142 yards), DRYDEN DUGGINS, Episcopal, (Accounted for 137 yards; 83 on kickoff returns, 54 receiving, TD), BRANT YARBROUGH, Parkview Baptist, (Accounted for 131 yards, 2 TDs, LLOYD BENSON, Catholic, (Caught 9 passes, 125 yards, TD), JONATHAN SWIFT, Central, (Rushed 20 times, 110 yards, TD, passed for a TD), LEWIS WARD, Episcopal, (Completed 6 of 10 passes, 117 yards, TD), KALANTE WILSON, Dunham, (Rushed 9 times, 109 yards), ETHAN CARMOUCHE, Episcopal, (Rushed 15 times, 105 yards), JAC COMEAUX, Dunham, (Caught 3 passes, 98 yards 2 TDs), JOHN HUBBARD, Scotlandville, (Caught 9 passes, 96 yards, TD), DYLAN SAMPSON, Dutchtown, (Rushed 21 times, 94 yards, TD), CONNOR WISHAM, Zachary, (Rushed 11 times, 81 yards, 3 TDs).
DAVID CRESSON, Episcopal, (14 tackles), CADEN COOLEY, Central, (12 tackles), JACK MASSEY, Catholic, (12 tackles, TFL), COLIN BONVAVENTURE, St. Michael, (9 tackles, interception), BENJI GORDON, Catholic, (8 tackles), KOLBIE JACKSON, Central, (7 tackles), HAYDEN KNAPPS, St. Michael, (7 tackles), HAROLD LAWSON, Catholic, (7 tackles), JOHN BRADY SESSUMS, Episcopal, (6 tackles, 2 TFLs, sack), CLAYTON COMEAUX, Parkview Baptist, (2 tackles, 2 interceptions for 109 yards, TD)
KALEB MITCHELL, Denham Springs, (5 punts, 46.8 yards)