Hahnville Anthony Williams (7) runs against Zachary during the final day of the Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA Prep Classic at Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans LA on December 09, 2017.

Advocate Photo by STEPHEN LEW

Yeah, Hahnville had Pooka.

But not even Anthony "Pooka" Williams, arguably the most electrifying player in the state of Louisiana, was enough to stop Zachary from winning its second state championship in three years.

No. 10 Hahnville fell 34-14 to No. 4 Zachary late Saturday night in the Class 5A state championship game of the Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA Prep Classic at the Mercedes Benz Superdome.

The Broncos, led by the two-headed monster of quarterback Keilon Brown and running back Darweshi Sanders, exploded for 27 unanswered points in the second quarter to pull away from Williams and Company.  

"Hats off to Zachary," Williams said. "They stopped me. They just came out here and went to work."

Well, perhaps that's a bit of a stretch.

Williams, who has verbally committed to Kansas, still finished with 210 yards on 36 carries and a touchdown. But it wasn't nearly enough for the Tigers (12-3). Williams averaged 5.8 yards per carry Saturday, about half of what he averaged during the season when he averaged 10.5 yards every time he touched the ball.

"They hemmed Anthony in," said Hahnville coach Nick Saltaformaggio. "I don't think he had any big runs tonight."

His longest run was a 26-yarder in the first quarter. It was his first touchdown in the Superdome and the last one of his stellar season and career. Williams finished the season with a jaw-dropping 3,118 yards and 37 rushing TDs.

His touchdown came two plays after Lyncoy Reynaud recovered a fumble.

But it was all Zachary after that. The Broncos (13-2) reeled off 27 straight points to silence the large Hahnville crowd that had waited 14 long years to get back to the Dome.

The Tigers, who had their 11-game winning streak snapped, were hoping to win their seventh state championship to go along with the ones won in 1949, 1968, 1972, 1992, 1994 and 2003.

Saltaformaggio was looking to add to his own personal trophy case, too. The fourth-year Hahnville coach was going for his second state title after leading East Jefferson to a 4A championship in 2013.

But instead, the Tigers saw those aspirations dashed in the second quarter.  

Zachary wasted little time responding to Williams' touchdown, marching 71 yards in nine plays. Darweshi Sanders capped off the drive with a 4-yard run on the first play of the second quarter.

The Broncos scored again less than two minutes later on Brown's 80-yard quarterback keeper.

Sanders added a 37-yard run with 5:06 remaining in the quarter to give Zachary a 20-7 lead.

Hahnville was marching down field to try to close the gap at the end of the quarter, but Williams fumbled. Zachary's Maverick McClure scooped it up and sprinted into Tiger territory.

Brown made Hahnville pay on the next play, tossing a perfect 30-yard strike to put the Broncos ahead 27-7 at halftime.

"When we turned that ball over and they scored on the next play, all the wind sorta went out of our sails," Saltaformaggio said.

Williams rushed 20 times for 111 yards in the half.

Zachary coach David Brewerton was pleased with his team's effort against Williams.

"Our defense has played tremendous all season long," Brewerton said. "We're  not built on being a big, pounding defense. We are built on speed. We run with great angles. I watch our guys run pursuit drills every day in practice and that's what's important when you play a guy like that."

Unlike last week, when Hahnville erased a 28-14 halftime deficit on the road at Acadiana and rallied for a 43-42 victory, there was no coming back this time.

Hahnville's only score of the second half was a 1-yard run by quarterback Jha'quan Jackson with five minutes left. Hahnville got the onside kick, but Zachary's Jon Burrell intercepted a Jackson pass to seal it. Zachary, which forced four turnovers in the game, closed the game out by scoring on Chris Hart's 26-yard fumble return.

It was Hahnville's first loss since falling to Brother Martin in Week 3. That loss left the Tigers 1-2, but then they got rolling before having their season come to a disappointing end Saturday night in the Dome.

"When Brother Martin knocked us in the teeth — and no one has knocked us in the teeth until tonight other than Brother Martin —  it was a wake-up call," Saltaformaggio said. "I knew we were talented. We're Hahnville. I came to Hahnville for this. It's disappointing for our seniors, but Hahnville will be back in this Dome in a relatively short period of time."

Follow Rod Walker on Twitter, @rwalkeradvocate.