The updated Perfect Game HS Top 50 national rankings showed expected movement with Winder-Barrow being eliminated and Mill Creek advancing in the state playoffs.
North Gwinnett is now the highest ranked of seven Georgia teams coming in at No. 8 followed by Allatoona (No.14), Parkview (No. 17), Blessed Trinity (No.22), Pope (No. 33), Winder-Barrow (No. 40) while Mill Creek enters the rankings for the first time at No. 44.
Outside of Winder-Barrow’s 37-spot slide, Blessed Trinity slid nine spots after suffering a game 2 loss to Columbus however rebounded to win the series in three games to advance.
With Winder-Barrow out, Allatoona (31-3) and Pope (31-5) are the only remaining nationally ranked teams in class 6A. Allatoona swept Effingham County in the second round and will host a hot Johns Creek (20-12) team in the Elite 8. Pope swept last season’s 5A state champion Houston County to advance to face Dalton (24-8). Region 6-6A widely considered the toughest region in class 6A, has three of four teams remaining in the Elite 8 in Allatoona, Dalton and River Ridge.
North Gwinnett (32-2) and Parkview (30-4) would meet in the class 7A semifinals if each survive their Elite 8 matchups. North Gwinnett will travel to Hillgrove (25-10) while Parkview will host Woodstock (24-13). Mill Creek (31-5) is on the opposite of the bracket and will travel to North Paulding (23-10). Hillgrove is the lone remaining Cobb County team in class 7A after last season’s 6A state champion Walton fell to Mill Creek.
Blessed Trinity (31-4) will host West Laurens (23-10). The Titans have passed very tough tasks in the first two rounds of class 4A defeating Cartersville and Columbus.
Other Series of Note:
Class 3A’s top-ranked team Redan (25-9) continues to roll. The Raiders have won 16 straight game an advanced to the Elite 8 after sweeping Crisp County and will host Coahulla Creek. Redan has scored 12 or more runs in three of their four playoffs games so far. Coahulla Creek (24-9) was ranked tenth by the Georgia Dugout Preview rankings entering the playoffs and defeated No. 6 Pike County in the second round. Six of the top 10 in class 3A are in the quarterfinals with Calhoun and Lovett being the two unranked teams.
Baseball season for the Winder-Barrow Bulldogs came to an abrupt end with a 7-2 game 3 loss to Richmond Hill in the second round of the 6A playoffs this past Saturday. Winder Barrow (30-4) and Richmond Hill (23-11) split the first two games of the series on Wednesday however weather pushed game 3 all the way to Saturday afternoon.
The early elimination of the third-ranked team nationally in the latest Perfect Game HS Top 50 is shocking. Winder-Barrow was the highest ranked Georgia team in the PG HS Top 50 and Max Preps Xcellent 25, ranked No.1 in class 6A by the Georgia Dugout Preview entering the playoffs, and had not lost to an opponent from Georgia all season. (No.11 Baseball America Top 25 behind Class 7A No.7 Parkview)
Beau Hanna put the Bulldogs up 2-1 with a two-run homer in the third inning off of Richmond Hill’s Tyler Harrison. Richmond Hill responded in the fifth inning by putting up two runs for a 3-2 lead. The Wildcats added four insurance runs in the top of the seventh then shut the Bulldogs down in the bottom of the inning for the series-clinching victory.
Richmond Hill, the two-seed from Region 2-6A, is the lone remaining team from the region and will face Lee County (24-11; No.7 in Georgia Dugout Preview) in the Elite 8. Richmond Hill entered the playoffs unranked in by the Georgia Dugout Preview but was receiving consideration. The Wildcats confirmed they deserved the consideration with the series victory over Winder-Barrow.
The Roswell Hornets have been trending up all season. The Hornets, ranked No.12, took on their first nationally ranked opponent for the first time in recent history against No.84 Camden County in the National High School Football Top 100
The Hornets jumped on the Wildcats early and then kept the Wildcats at bay to get the win.
Underrated, yet respected running back Sheldon Evans capped Roswell’s opening 80-yard drive with a 1-yard touchdown run to put the Hornets up 7-0 with 8:21 left in the opening frame. Evans finished with a quiet 181 yards and two touchdowns but was a vital part of the Roswell offense against a stiff Camden defense that made sound adjustments in the second half.
After punting on its opening possession Camden County forced Roswell to punt yet muffed it, Roswell’s Mitch Stone recovered the muff. Roswell cashed it in for a touchdown on a 6-yard pass from Quintarious Neely to AJ Smith to push the lead to 14-0 with 2 minutes left in the fourth. The touchdown pass by Neely capped his 11-of-11 start throwing the football, mainly on short passes and long screens.
Evans found the end zone again with six seconds gone by in the second quarter racing in from 34-yards out to give the Hornets a 21-0 lead.
Camden never got anything going on offense and were forced to punt and then threw and interception. Roswell turned that interception into points with a 32-yard field goal from Turner Barckhoff to push the margin to 24-0 with 2:57 left in the first half.
Camden, desperate for points and now having to somewhat abandon its run heavy Wing-T offense, answered for the first time with a 62-yard drive with a 34-yard touchdown pass from Antonio Hamilton to Kevon Brewington just before the end of the half for 24-7 halftime score.
Camden was unable to get points on its opening possession of the second half and Roswell went up 31-7 on a 10-yard touchdown run by Quintarious Neely with just over four minutes gone by in the third quarter.
After a punting showcase by each team the rest of the third and into the fourth quarter, Camden continued to fight scoring midway in the fourth quarter on a 12-yard touchdown run by Harrison Poole with 6:25 left in the game. Roswell would eat the clock and finish the drive and game with a Barckhoff 39-yard field goal for the final 34-15 margin.
Neely finished with 216 yard passing with one touchdown, Neely also rushed for a touchdown while Evans rushed for 180 yards and two touchdowns.
Roswell (12-0) will host Collins Hill in the 6A quarterfinals next week. Camden County (10-2) will look to build off a successful bounce back season in which both of its losses came to teams in the 6A quarterfinals (Colquitt County was the other), following a 5-5 effort in 2014 which resulted in missing the playoffs.
As the GDFL regular season winds down division titles and playoff spots are up for grabs across the league.
This season in the GDFL each conference- Xtreme and Impact- consist of five divisions. Each division winner makes the playoffs and the top four division winners earn a first-round bye based on overall record with a league tiebreak system in place. The fifth-place division winner will host a first-round playoff game. The next seven teams in each division based on overall record regardless of division standing earn a playoff berth.
We take a look at the Impact Conference first where the defending GDFL Champion Oklahoma Thunder reside.
In the Midwest division the Oklahoma Thunder (9-0 overall; 3-0 division) host the Memphis Blast (7-3; 3-1 division) in a game where Memphis has an outside shot to win the division. Memphis has one loss in the division while the Thunder are undefeated, a Memphis win by 19 points would give them the division title. The Thunder won the previous regular season meeting 30-12.
The Lone Star division features a match-up between the first-place Oklahoma Bounty Hunters (8-1 overall; 3-1 division) and the second-place Dallas Anarchy (5-4 overall; 3-2 division). With a victory of at least six points the Anarchy would win the division, a loss and they could be all but mathematically eliminated from playoff contention. The Bounty Hunters won the previous regular season meeting 23-18. The Texas Eagles (4-5 overall; 1-5 division) are still mathematically alive for a playoff spot.
Things get interesting in the Southwest Division. The Crescent City Kings (5-4 overall; 4-1 division) host the Panhandle Crusaders (4-4-1 overall; 3-1 division) this weekend. The loser is all but mathematically eliminated from playoff contention. Crescent City won the previous regular season meeting. The Bayou Vipers (5-4 overall; 3-3 division) are still mathematically alive for a playoff spot.
In the Central South division the Nashville Storm (8-0 overall; 3-0 division) have locked up the division championship and the Tennessee Lightning Bolts (5-3 overall; 2-1 division) are still mathematically alive. The Indianapolis Tornadoes (6-2 overall; 2-0 division) have locked up the Central North division while the Huntsville Rockets (5-3 overall; 1-1 division) are still mathematically alive.
On to the Xtreme Conference.
The Central Penn Piranha (7-1 overall; 6-1 division) have locked up the Northeast division while the Hampton Roads Redskins (8-0 overall; 4-0 division) have locked up the Coastal division.
In the Midway division the Carolina Venom (8-0 overall; 5-0 division) have locked up the division crown while the Florida Falcons (9-0 overall; 5-0 division) locked up the Gulf Coast division title with their win last week over the Georgia Crush.
The East Alabama Predators (9-0 overall; 3-0 division) have won the Heart of the South division.
The GDFL regular season will conclude August 16th with the playoffs beginning August 23rd.
The Miami Fury scored a late first half touchdown, added a second half field goal, and held off a late threat to defeat the Atlanta Phoenix 9-7 in the second round of the Women’s Football Alliance playoffs. Miami avenged their 12-8 regular season loss to the Phoenix.
The Phoenix complete their second season 7-3 and were the Southeast Division champions. Atlanta defeated the Tampa Bay Inferno last week in Tampa 15-7. The Inferno were the South Atlantic division champions.
Miami improves to 7-2 and will face the Chicago Force in the quarterfinals on July 5th in Chicago. Chicago defeated the Western Michigan Mayhem 66-0 in the second round.
The Georgia boys soccer playoffs will fill in its second round and quarterfinal brackets this week. Currently there are five teams- four in the Top 10- from Georgia nationally ranked in the latest NSCAA Top 20. Defending 5A champion McIntosh is ranked No.1 followed by Greater Atlanta Christian at No. 3 in the Top 5, both are undefeated. GAC tied Murray County and Thomasville with a first round-high 10 goals in their 10- 0 victory over Union County in the state playoffs.
Sixth-ranked Dalton recorded a class 4A-high 11 goals defeating Sandy Creek 11-1, No.9 Brookwood shut out South Forsyth 3-0 and No.15 Gainesville won 2-0 over Tucker in the first round- are still alive in the state playoffs in their classification.
Region 8-5A champ Clarke Central poses a threat in class 5A with McIntosh and Gainesville. Clarke Central advanced to the second round with a 3-0 victory over Dunwoody and would not meet either until the state championship match after possibly having a win over 5A runner-up Houston County. Houston County defeated Clarke Central in the semifinals on their way to their runner-up finish last season.
South Carolina will begin their state tournament next week, May 13th. Wando despite having a tie comes in at No.2 while one-loss J.L. Mann is No. 12.
The complete National Soccer Coaches Association of America Spring 2014 rankings as of late April are here.
Class 6A and 5A semifinals may be one of the toughest in the nation as far as semifinal brackets go. Colquitt wins on the road, Norcross is the defending champion, Tucker averaged close to 50 points a game during the regular season yet only 26.6 points per game in the postseason, McEachern has their quarterback back with plenty of playmakers, Creekside is inspired and North Gwinnett plays to the final horn. Those are just a few of the things that the Georgia High School Football quarterfinals offered up.
We begin in 6A where there no undefeated teams yet all are currently ranked nationally ranked or have been this season. 44-7 is combined record of the semifinal teams with all seven losses coming to playoff teams. North Gwinnett is the only one-loss team in the field. North Gwinnett’s only loss was to Collin’s Hill and defeated Norcross in the regular season. Norcross’ non-Georgia loss came to the top nationally ranked team Booker T. Washington (FL). Booker T. Washington is undefeated and are in the Florida Class 4A semifinals. Colquitt County has two losses with only one to a team from Georgia, Camden County. Colquitt’s other loss was to Hoover (AL) who is undefeated, nationally ranked and will face Auburn (AL) in the Alabama 6A finals. McEachern’s losses were to region opponents North Cobb and Hillgrove. North Cobb lost to Colquitt County in the second round and Hillgrove lost to North Gwinnett in the quarterfinals. Hillgrove defeated Camden County in the second round.
McEachern defeated Collins Hill 35-32 to advance. McEachern jumped out 21-3 lead but needed an 86-yard punt return for touchdown by Taj Griffin and a late interception to seal their semifinal slot. Griffin finished with 153 yards rushing and a touchdown. Alizee Chubbs rushed for two touchdowns and Bailey Hockman passed for a touchdown. Ty Clemons returned to action for the Indians coming off an ankle injury passing for 10 yards and rushing for -5 yards. Tyler Herman passed for two touchdowns, Tyler Henderson rushed for a touchdown and Dwayne Smith returned a punt for a touchdown for Collins Hill. McEachern will host North Gwinnett in the semifinals after winning the coin flip between two teams that are both three-seeds out of their regions. McEachern won the only previous meeting between the teams in 2011 in the Georgia Dome.
North Gwinnett did what they have done all season, find ways to win. The Bulldogs came from behind for the second week in a row in the playoffs to advance with a 35-31 victory over Hillgrove. CJ Leggett toted the mail for North Gwinnett rushing 40 times for 141 yards and four touchdowns. In the end it was North Gwinnett’s defense setting up the go-ahead touchdown with a fumble recovery leading to Hayden Sphire hitting Daniel Imatorbhebhe for a touchdown with a little over a minute remaining to give North Gwinnett the 35-31 lead. Hillgrove would have several shots at the end zone on their final possession but North Gwinnett’s secondary answered the bell each time knocking down pass after pass sealing the win with an interception as time expired. Hillgrove’ Richarde Bagley rushed for four touchdowns but was playing at the quarterback spot when he fumbled late in the fourth quarter setting up North Gwinnett’s final touchdown. Justin Denton caught a touchdown pass from Elijah Ironside for Hillgrove. North Gwinnett is a co-Region 7 champion and will play at McEachern in the semifinals in their fourth consecutive road playoff game.
Colquitt County jumped out early on Dacula and cruised to a 42-17 victory. Daniel Mobley passed for three touchdowns and rushed for another. Bull Barge, Colquitt’s leader in tackles, returned an interception for a touchdown and running back Sihiem King rushed for a touchdown. Kiel Pollard caught a touchdown and rushed for a touchdown as the Packers improved to 12-3 in road playoff games since 2009 under head coach Rush Propst. Colquitt will go for their 13th road under Props win next week at Norcross. Norcross defeated Colquitt in a scrimmage earlier this year in August, last year in a scrimmage in Moultrie and in the semifinals at Norcross.
Norcross held Lowndes rushing attack under 100 yards and advanced with a 28-7 victory. Norcross’ quarterback AJ Bushed rushed for a touchdown and passed for two touchdowns while Josh Boyd added a rushing touchdown. Lowndes’ only touchdown came on Austin Dixon to Malik Roberts pass in the fourth quarter. Norcross will host Colquitt County.
In 5A… three of four teams are undefeated and Gainesville, the lone team with a loss, is the defending champion.
Mundy’s Mill gave Gainesville everything they wanted but in the end it was too much Gainesville and Deshaun Watson. Watson was a part of all six of Gainesville’s touchdowns as the Red Elephants advanced to the semifinals for the third consecutive season. Watson played most of the game with a slightly injured left (non-throwing) shoulder. Rodney Smith rushed for over 200 yards and two touchdowns for Mundy’s Mill. Mundy’s Mill finished the season 8-5, their best record in school history. Gainesville’s only lost was to 3A semifinalist Buford with a victory over ML King (out-of-state win over Florida 7A playoff team Blanche Ely) in the playoffs. Gainesville will travel to undefeated Tucker in the semifinals after Tucker won the coin toss.
Joe Farrar rushed for two touchdowns, Duke Shelly returned an interception for a touchdown and Eric Webber continued his steady work in the kicking department adding two field goals as Tucker shutout Ware County 29-0. Tucker is the region 6-5A champion where three of the four teams in that region advanced to the second round of the playoffs, Stephenson and Mays are the others. The Tigers have a victory over 3A Cedar Grove (eliminated in the second round). Tucker will host Gainesville in the semifinals in their fourth consecutive home playoff game.
Creekside defeated North Paulding 41-14 on the road to advance to the semifinals. Felix Harper passed for a touchdown and Dexter Knox rushed for four touchdowns for the Seminoles. Creekside remains undefeated and will face Kell in the semifinals. Creekside defeated three class 6A teams two of which made the playoffs in Langston Hughes (eliminated by McEachern in second round) and Westlake (eliminated by Camden County in first round). The Seminoles were region champions and defeated playoff region opponents Whitewater(lost to Warner Robins in the first round) and McIntosh (lost to Northside-Warner Robins in first round) in the regular season. In addition to their victory over North Paulding they defeated Harris County and an improving Lakeside-Evans in the postseason. Creekside will host Kell in the semifinals.
Kell jumped up on Warner Robins early and often. After Warner Robins added some late touchdowns Kell advanced with a 52-28. Kell’s Jay Moxey rushed for three touchdowns while Julian Burris and Itabari Mason added rushing touchdowns. Burris also returned a kickoff for a touchdown for the Longhorns. Kell will travel Creekside in the semifinals after Creekside won the coin toss in what will be the teams first-ever meeting. The Longhorns have regular season victories over 6A Lassiter (region champ) and 5A Creekview, both were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs. Kell defeated Allatoona and Mays in the playoffs prior to downing Warner Robins.
The middle classes in the Georgia semifinals provide quality match-ups with Class 3A still having a nationally ranked team. Class 4A’s favorite and lone nationally ranked team was eliminated meaning there will be a new champion in this class. Here is a look at how both classes semifinalist got there and what they have done to this point in the season.
In 4A Griffin is the lone unbeaten team and defeated previously unbeaten and class favorite Sandy Creek (11-1-1). Sandy Creek’s only other non-win this season came to Plant (FL). Plant and Sandy Creek tied in the season opener in August and Plant will face Apopka in the Florida Class 8A semifinals. Carrollton, which lost to Sandy Creek in the regular season, defeated Oxford (AL) during the regular season. Oxford was eliminated in the second round of the Alabama 6A playoffs.
Griffin remained undefeated knocking off Sandy Creek 32-26. Turnovers were the story of this game but the Bears came out on top. Jordan Colbert broke the seal on scoring with an 80-yard interception return for a touchdown. Sandy Creek’s Eric Swinney rushed for two touchdowns, Cole Garvin hit Justin Sumpter on a touchdown pass and Lorenzo Broadwater added two field goals for Sandy Creek. In the end it was Griffin and Jacquez Parks. Parks led Griffin on two late touchdown drives in the fourth quarter as Griffin advanced to play Wayne County in the semifinals. Parks hit Christian Owens on a touchdown pass and Telly Sloan scored the go-ahead touchdown on the ground for the Bears. Griffin will host Wayne County in the semifinals. Prior to the Sandy Creek victory, Griffin’s previous biggest win was against Stockbridge (lost in the quarterfinals to Carrollton).
Marist racked up nearly 430 yards rushing ending Burke County’s 11 game home playoff winning streak with the 42-20 victory. Chase Martenson rushed for four touchdowns and Marcus Miller rushed for two touchdowns for Marist. Donquell Green rushed for a touchdown and passed for a touchdown for Burke County in his final game. Marist will host Carrollton in a playoff rematch from last season. Marist losses this season came to 5A Thomas County Central- eliminated in the first round and 2A semifinalist Lovett.
Carrollton won the battle of the Wing-T offenses scoring 17 unanswered points in the second half to defeat Stockbridge 24-14. Will Garrett, Trey Chivers and Jarvis Terrell rushed for touchdowns and Tyler Newsome kicked a field goal for Carrollton. Carrollton finished with 0 yards passing. Javon Brandon rushed for a touchdown and passed for a touchdown for Stockbridge. Carrollton will face Marist in the semifinals. Marist defeated Carrollton in five overtimes in the second round of the playoffs last season. Carrollton’s only loss this season was to Sandy Creek.
Wayne County exploded for 51 points, two shy of their season high, on the strength of Krenwick Sanders three touchdown receptions and a rushing touchdown. Lavontae Larry returned and interception for a touchdown while Anfreenee Jordan and A.J. McGill added rushing touchdowns in the 51-21 victory over Alexander. Wayne County will travel to Griffin in the semifinals. Both of Wayne County’s losses came to 4A Burke County (eliminated in the quarterfinals by Marist).
In 3A Buford and Washington County are the only undefeated teams. Buford is the defending champion.
Callaway (12-1) defeated St. Pius 35-14 and is quietly becoming a team that many my need to take notice in despite Buford’s “lock” on 3A. Tez Parks rushed for two touchdowns, Terry Godwin and Eddie Culpepper added a rushing touchdowns and Dre Martin returned an interception for a touchdown for Callaway. Joey Conners and Nick Ruffin had touchdown runs for St. Pius. Callaway will travel to Buford for the semifinals. Callaway’s loss came to 5A Harris County who lost in the second round of the playoffs to undefeated Creekside.
Buford was able to shake off their slow start to defeat Carver-Columbus 36-6 to advance. Taylor Mitchell, Evan Cooper and Thomas Wilson had rushing touchdowns and Mitchell tossed a touchdown to Tyler Shipman for Buford. Jawon Pass rushed for Carver-Columbus’ only touchdown. Buford won the coin toss and will host Callaway in the semifinals. Hosting the semifinals means Buford will not play a road game in the playoffs as the championship game will be held in the Georgia Dome if they advance past Callaway. Buford has scored 36 or more points in every game this season and has not allowed more than 14 points in a game this season winning every game by 24 or more points. The Wolves defeated 5A Gainesville during the regular season and have scored 60 or more points in four games this season.
Melvin Hill rushed for five touchdown and DJ Sanders had four interceptions as Washington County defeated Blessed Trinity 46-17. Washington County defeated four playoff teams during the regular season, 1A Public ECI (lost to Johnson County in the first round) , 2A Lovett (semifinalist) in overtime, 3A Laney (lost to Lovett in the quarterfinals) and 3A Jefferson County (lost to Carver-Columbus in the second round). Washington County was leading in their season opener against 1A Private semifinalist ECLA before it was suspended due to lightning. Since the contest was a non-region game it did not have to be completed nor made up therefore it did not count towards either teams record.
Ringgold defeated Central-Carrollton 35-10. Ringgold quarterback Slade Dale scored at least two touchdowns and Wesley Long had Central-Carrollton’s only touchdown. Ringgold defeated 4A Dalton (lost in the first round of the playoffs) and lost to playoff teams Central-Carrollton and Carterville during the regular season. They have wins over North Hall and Cedar Grove in the playoffs.
The smallest classes in Georgia has its share of good football. Here are notes on how the semifinal teams did in the quarterfinals while also taking a look at their body of work throughout the season.
In 2A Lamar County and Benedictine are undefeated. Lovett’s only lost was to 3A Washington County in overtime to go with an out-of-state win over Alabama 5A playoff team Fort Payne (AL).
Lamar County jumped out 14-0 and then trailed at halftime for the first time this season 17-14. After halftime Lawrence Austin hit Quay Searcy for a touchdown, Seary also returned an interception for a touchdown to open the scoring in the first half while Lance Austin added two fourth quarter touchdowns. Lamar County held on to defeat defending champion Jefferson 35-24. Lance Austin, finished with three touchdowns for Lamar County. Evan Sheriffs passed for two touchdowns (both to Dalton Hill) and Isiah Blake rushed for a touchdown for Jefferson. Lamar County head coach Franklin Stephens won two state title at Tucker in 2008 and 2011. The Trojans will host Benedictine in the semifinals.
Lovett overcame a 13 point deficit but scoring 21 unanswered points in the third quarter to beat Laney 35-33. Grant Haley had three rushing touchdowns and caught a touchdown pass and Willie Candler rushed for a touchdown for Lovett. Horatio Keller rushed for three touchdowns and passed for two touchdowns- both to Andre James, for Laney. Laney was 2-5 on PATs which were the difference in the contest. Lovett will face Brooks County in the semifinals with the site to be determined by a coin flip. Lovett has defeated playoff teams 3A Woodward Academy, 3A St. Pius, 3A Blessed Trinity 4A Marist and 2A Greater Atlanta Christian this season.
Brook County defeated Bowden 42-20. Brooks County will face Lovett in the semifinals with the site to be determined by a coin flip. Lovett is located in the Metro Atlanta are while Brooks County is on the Georgia-Florida border. Brooks County lost to 6A Valdosta, a playoff team, during the regular season.
Benedictine remained undefeated (13-0) rushing for five touchdowns in a 35-14 win over last seasons runner-up Calhoun. Mike Huggins rushed for two touchdowns for Benedictine. Felix Chapman passed for two touchdowns for Calhoun. Benedictine won their fifth playoff game, third this year, in the schools history and will travel to Lamar County in the semifinals. Benedictine is located in the Savannah-area while Lamar County is northwest of Macon.
In 1A Public defending champion ECI has been eliminated.
Charlton County, the nine seed, shutout the number one seed Seminole County 42-0. The Charlton County Indians will travel to face another set of Indians in Irwin County in the semifinals. Charlton’s losses this season have come to 5A Ware County (eliminated in quarterfinals by Tucker), 2A Fitzgerald (eliminated in second round to Benedictine), Clinch County (eliminated in quarterfinals) and Irwin County (semifinalist).
Fourth-seeded Irwin County rushed for over 500 yards getting touchdown runs from Ryan Peterson, Jakyron Young, James Curtis, TJ Wynn and Autuane Merritt in their 56-26 win over Johnson County. Michael Taylor caught three touchdown passes for Johnson County. Irwin County advances to the semifinals for the first time since 1997 and will host Charlton County. Irwin County defeated Charlton County 29-26 at Charlton County during the regular season. Irwin County (10-1-1) tied 2A Fitzgerald and lost to Clinch County in the regular season.
Sixth-seeded Hawkinsville running back JD Burden rushed for nearly 200 yards and scored two rushing touchdowns and Dakota Sloan rushed for a touchdown in their 23-8 victory over Clinch County. Octavious Johnson scored on a rushing touchdown for three-seed Clinch County. Hawkinsville lost to playoff teams 2A Bleckley County (lost to Brooks County in the second round), Dooly County (lost in quarterfinals) and 1A Private Brookstone (lost in first round to Prince Avenue Christian) will travel to Marion County in the semifinals.
Johnny Royal scored on a touchdown run and AJ Wells kicked a field goal with less than a minute remaining to cap two-seeded Marion County’s come-from-behind victory 24-21 over tenth-seeded Dooly County. Dustin Eckert rushed for a touchdown and passed for a touchdown for Marion County. Marion County will host Hawkinsville in the semifinals
In 1A Private the top four seeds advanced and only Calvary Day has suffered a loss this season.
Fifth-seeded Prince Ave jumped out to a 14-0 lead on touchdown runs by Zantravious Shields and Max Moorman against fourth-seeded Calvary Day. From there Calvary Day scored 33 unanswered points to advance with the 33-14 victory. Michael Peterson passed for three touchdowns and Robert Heyward rushed for two touchdowns for Calvary Day. Calvary Day will travel to ECLA in the semifinals.
Top-seeded Eagles Landing Christian Academy (11-0) overcame the loss of their quarterback Dalton Etheridge last week to defeat Darlington 24-10. ELCA was trailing to 3A semifinalist Washington County in the regular season opener before it was suspended due to weather before halftime. Since the game was not a region game it did not have to be completed nor made up therefore it did not count towards either teams record.
Aquinas defeated Mt. Paran 35-32. Liam Welch passed for two touchdowns and rushed for a touchdown. John Morris and Daniel Lindsey added rushing touchdowns for Aquinas. Dorian Walker scored four rushing touchdowns for Mt. Paran.
Undefeated and two-seed Mt. Pisgah defeated Holy Innocents 15-7. Mt. Pisgah will host Aquinas in the semifinals.
Three of the eight come from the loaded Region 7-6A (Gwinnett County), two from the respected Region 1-6A (South Georgia- Colquitt County and Lowndes), two from Region 4-6A (Cobb County-McEachern and Hillgrove) and one from Region 8-6A (Gwinnett County- Dacula).
Norcross, North Gwinnett and Collins Hills all hail from Region 7-6A and finished in a three-way tie for the region title during the regular season, all were awarded pieces of the region title. Region 7-6A is 7-1 in the 6A playoff through two rounds.
Region champions Lovejoy (2-6A), Langston Hughes (3-6A), Archer (8-6A), Alpharetta (6-6A), North Cobb (4-6A) and Camden County (1-6A) were knocked out in the second round. Region 5-6A champion Lassiter was the only region champion not to advance to the second round losing to Region 7-6A 4-seed Peachtree Ridge in the first round.
Here are the updated Georgia 6A playoff brackets with notes from some of the games below
Hillgrove, which pulled from McEachern in 2006 when they opened, scored 27 unanswered points after trailing 21-7 against Camden County to win 34-21. It was Hillgrove’s second playoff win at Camden County in the past four seasons. They lead the all-time series 2-1 (all in the playoffs, all in Kingsland,GA). Justin Denton returned a punt 82 yards for a touchdown and caught a touchdown pass. Hillgrove quarterback Elijah Ironside passed for two touchdowns-one a 72-yarder to Emanuel Beal. Omar Black caught a touchdown pass from Sonny Harrison. Kalvarez Bessent caught a touchdown while Harrison Poole and Antonio Wimbush rushed for a touchdown apiece for Camden County.
Michael D’Angola kicked a 28-yard field goal with seven seconds remaining as North Gwinnett defeated Archer 34-32. He also connected on a 30-yard field goal in the game. Defensive tackle Dante Sawyer threw a touchdown pass, Hayden Sphire passed for two touchdowns-both to Caleb Scott and CJ Leggett scored a 39-yard rushing touchdown for North Gwinnett. Dylan Singleton rushed for two touchdowns and caught a touchdown while Gabe Tiller had three touchdown passes for Archer who finished with a school record 11 wins. Archer, in their fifth year of football, pulled from Grayson in 2009. Grayson was the 2011 5A (highest class at the time) state champion did not make the playoffs this season.
McEachern trailed 21-9 with less than six minutes to play before coming back to win 22-21 at Langston Hughes. Freshman quarterback Bailey Hockman passed for a touchdown, Taj Griffin and Alizee Chubbs rushed for touchdowns for the Indians. Hughes’ Keion Davis rushed for a touchdown and Kenny Moxey passed and rushed for touchdowns. McEachern advances to the quarterfinals for the first time since 1999 and are doing it without senior starting quarterback Ty Clemmons.
Lowndes never trailed as they downed Lovejoy 23-18. Alex Brown and Jerome Daniels scored rushing touchdowns while Nick hart kicked three field goals for Lowndes. Preston Williams caught a touchdown pass, Jeremiah Kirkland scored a rushing touchdown and Brandon Williams scored a touchdown on a fumble recovery for Lovejoy. Lovejoy failed on all three PAT attempts. Lowndes will travel to north Georgia (Gwinnett County/Norcross) again next week to tussle with defending 6A champion Norcross.
Collins Hill cruised past Alpharetta as Tyler Henderson rushed for two touchdowns and caught two touchdown passes. Quarterback Tyler Herman threw four touchdowns as Collins Hill has outscored their opponents 89-7 in the first two rounds of the playoffs. The Eagles will host McEachern in the quarterfinals. McEachern and Collins Hill have never met before.
Dacula rallied from a 21-14 deficit to score 14 unanswered points in the second half to defeat Peachtree Ridge 28-21 to advance. Dacula quarterback Adam Grove passed for a touchdown and rushed for another in the third quarter while Bijan Sirleaf and Kelan Fraise rushed for a touchdown each in the first half. Chance Thrasher passed for two touchdowns and Myron Burton caught a touchdown and rushed for a touchdown. Dacula’s reward? They’ll host Colquitt County who is 12-3 under Rush Propst in road playoff games including Friday nights 52-6 thrashing of North Cobb.
Colquitt County led 38-0 at the half and defeated North Cobb 52-6. Shihiem King rushed for three touchdowns and Tim Saunders rushed for two touchdowns. Daniel Mobley tossed a touchdown pass to Kiel Pollard for Colquitt County. North Cobb got a late touchdown pass by Tyler Queen to avoid the shutout. Colquitt County is now 12-3 in road playoff games under head coach Rush Propst (last five seasons). Colquitt will hit the road again to face Dacula. It will be the teams first meeting in history.
For the second week in a row Norcross broke open a close game, this time to defeat Brookwood 32-9 after leading 7-3 at halftime. Norcross scored on five rushing touchdowns, two by Josh Boyd and one each by quarterback AJ Bush, wideout Clinton Lynch and KaDarius Garrett. Norcross was 1-5 on PATs in the game. Jesse Brown scored Brookwood’s lone touchdown via the ground. Norcross will host Lowndes in the quarterfinals in what will be the teams first meeting in history.
Under first-year head coach Welton Coffey, Camden County book-ended their 10-2 season with losses to North Gwinnett and Hillgrove who will meet in the quarterfinals. The Coastal Georgia Wildcats from Kingsland were outscored 68-35 in those losses. Camden County has exited the playoffs with home losses the past four seasons (’10 Hillgrove, ’11 Colquitt County, ’12 Norcross and ’13 Hillgrove). Camden County has won 10 or more games the past 13 seasons and have never lost more than two games in a season during that span.
Lovejoy’s losses came to Region 1-6A opponents Colquitt County and Lowndes by a combined nine points. Lovejoy is 0-3 against Region 1-6A teams the past two seasons. Lovejoy had made the state title game the past two seasons in two different classifications (4A and 6A).
Archer had it’s first undefeated regular season in the schools history and are 1-2 in the playoffs with both losses coming to North Gwinnet
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