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Wright and Johnson- BA Football’s Newest Tigers

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Broken Arrow football gained two key playmakers on offense this season in starting quarterback Lafayette Wright and slot receiver Kei’Shun Johnson. Wright and Johnson both transferred this year from Will Rogers High School in Tulsa. As seniors, Wright and Johnson both brought some experience and confidence to the Broken Arrow squad that most move-ins do not offer. BA Wide Receivers coach Ben Dixon noticed early on in the season the impact that the two players would have on the team.

“My first impressions of Lafayette and Kei’Shun were that they worked extremely hard and loved the game of football,” Dixon said. “It was also impressive how quickly they were able to mesh with their new teammates. It is not always easy joining a new situation like they did and I felt like they did a great job trying to fit into the Broken Arrow culture.”

During Broken Arrow’s first game of the season, against Union on ESPN, Wright and Johnson showed the BA faithful a glimpse of what was to come. Wright led a strong offensive drive down the length of the field against Union’s penetrating defense. From about 20 yards out, Wright lofted a pass to Johnson in the end zone, and Johnson made an acrobatic catch for the touchdown. Johnson’s catch was featured on SportsCenter highlights later that night. Even though Broken Arrow fell short of the win, Johnson, Wright, and the rest of the BA squad put on a good showing on national television.

“The highlight of the season for me was probably our first game against Union,” Johnson said. “It was just an atmosphere that I could not imagine, and then I ended up with a catch that found its way onto ESPN’s Top Ten Plays. It was unbelievable.”

Coming from the 4A school Will Rogers, Wright and Johnson made a big step to the 6A stage for their senior seasons. Wright in particular was given the difficult task of being thrust into the leading role of the offense as starting quarterback. During the short offseason that he had, Wright worked hard with his new teammates and coaches in order to familiarize himself with a new offense and the pressures that come with playing for a 6A school with high expectations.

“The adjustments I had to make as a first year starter here [at Broken Arrow] were becoming more vocal, putting extra work in on and off the field, and just making sure I continued to work hard,” Wright said. “The coaching staff and my teammates have given me a lot of support. They have made me feel like I have always been at Broken Arrow and pushed me to be the best I can be.”  

After only a couple games as a BA athlete, Johnson suffered a broken leg that sidelined him for the majority of the season. The injury was disheartening for the entire football program, as many coaches and players would miss seeing Johnson on the field over the course of the next several games. Johnson was determined, however, to work his way to a full recovery, and with the help of the Broken Arrow medical staff, Johnson is back to 100 percent and is excited about playing at the next level.

“He had put in a lot of work to have a good senior season and I believe he was about ready to have some big-time games,” Dixon said. “[His injury] was pretty upsetting for me personally because I know how hard he worked. Fortunately, we have a great training staff. They were able to help and advise him through rehab which will hopefully get him back quicker for his future in college football.”

Johnson was grateful for the encouragement that he received from his teammates and coaches.

“The coaching staff and my teammates were very supportive from the moment I came to Broken Arrow,” Johnson said. “Even after the injury they stayed supportive. When I came back it was tough but the coaches were really happy to see me.”

Although the Tigers did not finish the season the way they wanted to, the addition of the two move-ins in Wright and Johnson, as well as some stout play by Broken Arrow’s defense, helped BA reach the semifinals in this year’s playoffs. Wright and Johnson will move on to the next stages of their lives having left their mark on Broken Arrow football.

“Kei’Shun and Lafayette were great for this team,” Dixon noted. “Any time you can add smart and respectful student-athletes to the program it is a positive. They are both talented players and great young men that will have great success once they leave Broken Arrow High School.”    

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Wright and Johnson- BA Football’s Newest Tigers