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Monday, Nov. 30, 2015


Quarterfinals In Review
*Roswell 17, Collins Hill 10: Roswell broke a 10-10 tie in the fourth quarter on QB Quantarius Neely's 17-yard run at the end of a 15-play, 96-yard drive. Collins Hill had one more possession but was intercepted by Roswell's Marcelino Ball. Roswell RB Sheldon Evans rushed for 187 yards on 34 carries. Neely was 16-of-30 passing for 126 yards. Collins Hill, rated a 28-point underdog by the computer Maxwell Ratings, got inside the Roswell 35-yard line three times in the first quarter but got only three points.
   What it means - Roswell is in the semifinals for the first time since its state-championship season of 2006.
*Grayson 35, Westlake 28: Cameryn Brent rushed for a school-record 269 yards and four touchdowns. Grayson trailed 14-7 at halftime and tied the game with 10:08 left in the third quarter on a fourth-and-6 play when QB Chase Brice found Austin Nash in the end zone. Grayson took a 35-21 lead midway through the fourth quarter, and Westlake never threatened after getting within seven points with 7:32 left. Westlake sophomore QB Malik Willis threw for 155 yards and rushed for 92 but was intercepted in Westlake territory on his final possession.
   What it means - Grayson is in the semifinals for the first time since its state-championship season of 2011. Westlake was denied its first semifinal.
*Colquitt County 49, South Forsyth 31: South Forsyth led 17-7 in the first half and 31-28 in the fourth quarter with the ball in Colquitt County territory, but Colquitt got an interception (one of two by Quan Singletary) and scored the final 21 points of the game. Colquitt intercepted five passes, four in the fourth quarter, and LB Akiyie Bailey returned the fifth one 76 yards for the final score of the game. Bailey also had two interceptions. RB/WR Ty Lee rushed for 219 yards, and his 75-yard run in the fourth quarter set up the go-ahead touchdown.
   What it means - Colquitt, the defending champion, won its 28th consecutive game and is in the semifinals for the seventh straight season. Only Buford (2008-15) in state history has a longer streak.
*Mill Creek 23, Archer 0: Archer's first drive ended in a fumble at the Mill Creek 12, and Mill Creek drove 88 yards from there and never looked back. Mill Creek managed only 161 yards of total offense, according to the Gwinnett Daily Post, but allowed only 245 and forced three turnovers, including Peyton Moore's 26-yard interception return that made the score 17-0 with 1:47 left in the first half.
   What it means - Opened in 2004, Mill Creek is 13-0 and in the semifinals for the first time. Archer, the 2014 runner-up and preseason No. 1 team, failed to get back to the semifinals.
*Allatoona 59, Houston County 47: Allatoona QB Brandon Rainey rushed for seven touchdowns and a season-high 106 yards and passed for 180 yards. Houston County rallied from an 18-point deficit in the fourth quarter and trailed 52-47 with 3:19 to play, but Allatoona scored again after a two-minute drive to secure the victory. Houston County's Chris Brinson rushed for 151 yards and five touchdowns, and QB Jake Fromm passed for 369 yards and two touchdowns.
   What it means - Allatoona, which opened in 2008, is in the semifinals for the second consecutive season, still seeking its first final. Allatoona is the only Cobb County team still playing, and the only region champion left in AAAAA.
*Northgate 34, Kell 21: Kell scored on its first possession of the second half to tie the game 14-14, but Northgate outscored the Longhorns 20-0 over the next 16 minutes to put the game away. Ton Evans rushed for 121 yards and a touchdown, and Kyle Carter ran for 65 yards and a score. James Skalski returned an interception 33 yards for the Vikings' final touchdown.
   What it means - Northgate, opened in 2000, is in its first semifinal. Northgate is the first Coweta County school to make the semifinals since 2009. No Coweta school has won a state championship.
*Ware County 46, Drew 21:
Ware County trailed 21-19 at halftime but outscored the fourth-seeded Titans 27-0 in the second half. The Gators got four rushing touchdowns from Dedrick Mills, including two in the fourth quarter as Ware County pulled away. Mills rushed for 270 yards on 16 carries. A two-way starter, he also had four knockdown blocks and 13 tackles. Jamar Lincoln passed for one touchdown and ran for another.
   What it means - Franklin Stephens joins a list of only seven head coaches who have taken three schools to the semifinals. His others were Tucker and Lamar County. This is Ware's first semifinal since 2012.
*Glynn Academy 24, Stockbridge 21: Banks Entwistle kicked a 30-yard field goal with 14 seconds remaining to lead Glynn Academy to an upset of the top-ranked Tigers. Glynn trailed 21-7 in the fourth quarter but got two rushing touchdowns from Kendall Cross to tie the score with 8:20 to play. Garrison Hurd rushed for 205 yards. Stockbridge quarterback Malachi Brown passed or ran for all three of his team's touchdowns.
   What it means - Glynn Academy, the only AAAAA team remaining with a state title in its history (1964), is in its first semifinal since 1968. Stockbridge, a semifinalist last year, was trying to become the first Henry County public school to win a football state title.
Class AAAA
*Woodward Academy 42, Marist 14: Elijah Holyfield scored four touchdowns, and his 46-yard TD run midway thought the third quarter made it 29-7. Woodward led in total offense 542-330.
   What it means - Woodward Academy is in the semifinals for the season consecutive season and is 13-0 for the first time.
*Buford 49, Thomson 7: Buford RB Christian Turner rushed for 183 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries. Thomson, playing without injured 1,600-yard rusher Billy Mance, was held to 114 yards in total offense and eight first downs and scored its touchdown on a blocked pount.
   What it means - Buford extended its state-record streak of semifinals to nine. Buford coach Jess Simpson is 9-0 in road playoff games.
*Bainbridge 18, St. Pius 17: Dameon Pierce scored on runs of 72 and 39 yards (the second with 1:44 left) to rally Bainbridge from a 17-6 deficit. Pierce rushed for 214 yards on 23 carries. QB Brett McLaughlin was 8-of-17 passing for 73 yards. St. Pius rushed for 166 yards, about 60 percent of its usual output. St. Pius PK Nick Jones missed a 59-yard field goal in the final seconds.
   What it means - Bainbridge is in the semifinals for the third time, first since 1993. St. Pius was the 2014 runner-up.
*Cartersville 38, Jonesboro 14: Cartersville stretched a 21-7 halftime lead to 31-7 midway in the third quarter. QB Trevor Lawrence was 24-of-36 passing for 315 yards and four touchdowns. SB Antoine Jefferson had 11 catches for 118 yards. Jonesboro was held to 22 yards rushing, although Clemson-committed QB Zerrick Cooper had 224 yards passing.
   What it means - Cartersville, seeing its first title since 1999, is in the semifinals for the second straight year. Jonesboro was Clayton County's only remaining contender.
Class AAA
*Westminster 51, Adairsville 21: Westminster's Rankin Woley passed for two touchdowns, ran for one and returned an interception 31 yards for another. Zay Malcome rushed for 154 yards on 13 carries, and Chase Williams had 115 yards from scrimmage and scored two touchdowns. Blake Gillikin kicked two field goals, including a school-record 56-yarder. The game was tied 7-7 early in the second quarter, but Westminster scored the final 24 points of the half to take control.
   What it means - Westminster has won three consecutive road games to reach the semifinals for the second straight season. Only one other school (Flowery Branch 2008-09) has done that in consecutive years. The victory was coach Gerry Romberg's 14th road playoff win.
*Cedar Grove 41, Westside (Macon) 25: Westside scored early in the third quarter to cut Cedar Grove's lead to 14-7, but Israel Spivey returned the ensuing kickoff 83 yards for a touchdown and the Saints built the lead to 41-7 before giving up three late scores. Cedar Grove's LaBron Morris rushed for 115 yards on 16 carries, and QB Jelani Woods ran for a touchdown and passed for two. Adrian Fendell (64 yards) and Antwuan Jackson (18 yards) returned fumbles for touchdowns in the fourth quarter.
   What it means - Cedar Grove is DeKalb County's only remaining team. This is the Saints' first trip to the semifinals since 1991, when they were AA runner-up.
*Calhoun 33, Elbert County 30: Calhoun QB Kaelan Riley scored on a 9-yard run in the third overtime after Elbert County kicked a field goal on its possession, giving the Yellow Jackets their 28th consecutive victory. Riley rushed for 104 yards and four touchdowns, including one in each of the overtime periods. Elbert County's Mecole Hardman ran for 144 yards and three touchdowns and passed for 70 yards. The Blue Devils kicked a 25-yard field goal with 40 seconds left to force overtime.
   What it means - Calhoun won its 27th consecutive home playoff game and reached the semifinals for the seventh time in eight seasons.
*Blessed Trinity 35, Dawson County 7: Milton Shelton rushed for 227 yards on 22 carries and scored all five of Blessed Trinity's touchdowns (four rushing, one receiving). Blessed Trinity led 28-0 at halftime. The Titans held Dawson County to 77 yards passing (8-for-21) and recorded three interceptions and two sacks. Dawson County finished coach Sid Maxwell's first season with a school-record nine victories.
   What it means - Blessed Trinity is in its second semifinal. The Titans have never played in a final.
Class AA
*Fitzgerald 54, Benedictine 28: Fitzgerald RB J.D. King rushed for 332 yards and three touchdowns on 45 carries. Benedictine led 7-0 early after an interception return for a touchdown and later 21-10 after a long TD run. Fitzgerald piled on with five second-half touchdowns. QB James Graham rushed for 107 yards.
   What it means - Fitzgerald has reached the semifinals for the 10th time since its only state-championship team of 1948. Fitzgerald lost to Greater Atlanta Christian in the 2014 semifinals.
*Jefferson County 31, Rabun County 28: Sophomore PK Evans Hodges kicked a 31-yard field goal on the last play, his second game-winner of the playoffs. Hodges kicked a 33-yarder with 3:20 left the previous week in a 23-21 win over Wesleyan. Jefferson County had driven 72 yards to the Rabun 3-yard line in the final two minutes (aided by two personal-foul penalties on Rabun), but a holding penalty on Jefferson County forced the field-goal try. Jefferson County QB T.J. Bell was 19-of-37 passing for 320 yards and three touchdowns. He also rushed for 52 yards. Rabun QB Bailey Fisher was 12-of-22 passing for 178 yards and three touchdowns, two to WR Charlie Woerner, the AJC Super 11 pick playing his final high school game.
   What it means - Jefferson County, which opened in 1995, is in the semifinals for the first time, denying Rabun its first semifinal.
*Greater Atlanta Christian 23, Brooks County 12: QB Davis Mills was 11-of-21 passing for 160 yards and also rushed for 115 yards and two touchdowns. Marcus Young rushed for 121 yards. Brooks County QB Demontay Jones was 21-for-35 passing for 244 yards. His 31-yard TD run with 37 seconds left in the first half got Brooks within 20-12, but GAC held Brooks scoreless in the second half.
   What it means - GAC, the 2014 runner-up, is in the semifinals for the fifth time in search of its first state title. GAC, at No. 2, is the highest-ranked team remaining after the defeat of Benedictine, the only team to beat GAC the past two seasons.
*Pace Academy 33, Macon County 26: Macon County got within 33-26 on an 80-yard TD pass in the final minutes, but Pace recovered an onside kick and ran out the clock. Deon Jackson rushed for 102 yards and one touchdown on 13 carries. Gunner Faulk was 5-of-7 passing for only 86 yards but two touchdowns.
   What it means - Pace Academy, which started varsity football in 2008, is in the semifinals for the first time. It is the only No. 4 seed still playing in any class.
Class A (public)
*Commerce 20, Marion County 7: Will Thomas rushed for 100 yards on 26 carries, and Caleb Brooks ran for 103 on 15. Each scored touchdowns after short drives. Marion County was held to six first downs and didn't score until 3:34 left.
   What it means - Commerce is in the semifinals for the second consecutive season and is seeking its first state title since 2000. Marion County was the private draw's No. 1 seed.
*Clinch County 50, Johnson County 34: Clinch County rolled up 482 yards rushing and nearly had four 100-yard rushers. The leaders were RB Zebulon Johnson (179), Shannon Young (106), Charles McClelland (100) and QB Trezman Marshall (92). Clinch led only 22-20 at halftime.
   What it means - Clinch County is in the semifinals for the first time since its 2010 state-championship team.
*Irwin County 21, Trion 0: Irwin County was outgained 195-175 and scored its only offensive touchdown on a 12-play, 71-drive that entailed a successful fake punt and a fourth-and-4 QB keeper by Zach Tolar, who scored from 12 yards out. William Lewis (67 yards) and Cartayion Benyard (59 yards) returned interceptions for touchdowns.
   What it means - Irwin County, the 2014 runner-up, is back in the semifinals, seeking its first state title since 1975.
*Emanuel County Institute 34, Mount Zion 31: Rhett Gay threw a 2-yard pass to Willie Johnson with 1.6 seconds left for the winning touchdown at the end of a 64-yard drive in the final 90 seconds. Gay was 13-of-20 passing for 135 yards and two touchdowns. ECI's 1,000-yard rusher, Ricky Lee, was held to 28 yards on 12 carries, but Bobby McNear ran for 107 on seven carries. Mount Zion finished with 343 yards rushing, 403 total, to ECI's 345.
   What it means - ECI is in the semifinals for the first time since its 2012 state-championship team. Mount Zion, playing its 60th season of varsity football, was denied its first semifinal.
Class A (private)
*Prince Avenue Christian 30, Savannah Christian 10: Prince Avenue's Kevon Hudson had touchdown runs of 70 and 50 yards, and Jordan Hightower had touchdowns rushing and receiving. Savannah Christian took a 10-9 lead with a touchdown on its first possession of the second half, but Hudson scored on his 50-yard run two plays later to give the Wolverines the lead for good.
   What it means - Prince Avenue is in its third semifinal and first since 2012. Jeff Herron joins a list of only seven head coaches who have taken three schools to the semifinals. His others were Oconee County and Camden County.
*Eagle's Landing Christian 31, Mount Paran Christian 7: Trevor Gear rushed for 150 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries and D.J. Hammonds passed for 180 yards and ran for a score for ELCA, which led 17-0 at the end of the first quarter. Johnathan Youngblood returned a fumble 14 yards for a touchdown. ELCA held Mount Paran to 17 yards rushing and less than 100 total yards. Dalton Hardeman, Chase Burdette, Caleb Dallas and Josh Mays each had 10 total tackles.
   What it means - ELCA avenged a 49-7 loss in the 2014 championship game and reached the semifinals for the fifth consecutive season. ELCA won the championship in 2012.
*Aquinas 28, Christian Heritage 27: Aquinas held on for the one-point win when Christian Heritage missed a 40-yard field goal in the game's final minute. Christian Heritage had taken a 27-21 lead on Tyson Cooper's third rushing touchdown with 10:31 to play, but the extra-point attempt was blocked. Aquinas responded with a touchdown run by Chris Gates and a successful PAT for the 28-27 lead. D'Angelo Durham led Aquinas with 128 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
   What it means - Aquinas is in its third straight semifinal. The Fighting Irish won the title in 2013.
*Stratford Academy 43, Pinecrest Academy 15: Stratford Academy had three 100-yard rushers in O'Showen Williams (13-106-2), Kasey Sanders (13-110-3) and Tyler Jordan (13-112-0) - and 339 yards rushing overall. The Eagles scored two touchdowns in the final four minutes of the first half and another on their first possession of the third quarter to take control.
   What it means - Stratford Academy, an eight-time champion in the Georgia Independent School Association, is in its first GHSA semifinal in its second year in the new league.
Coach Of The Week
Presented By Peachtree Orthopaedic Clinic
Shannon Jarvis, Mill Creek
1Shannon Jarvis of Mill Creek is the Peachtree Orthopaedic Clinic Coach of the Week. His Hawks defeated fourth-ranked Archer 23-0 last week and reached the program's first state semifinal game, which will be played at home against No. 1-ranked Colquitt County. Mill Creek has shut out six opponents and allowed less than 400 yards rushing total in 13 games. Jarvis is a former player at Elbert County, where he played under T. McFerrin. Jarvis later coached under McFerrin at South Gwinnett during the David Greene era before getting the Mill Creek job.
As national leaders in the practice of sports medicine, Peachtree Orthopaedic Clinic physicians have a long history of providing top-notch care. Our highly skilled surgeons take care of the Atlanta Braves, the Hawks, Georgia State University, the Gwinnett Braves and a variety of Atlanta high schools. We also serve as advisors to the Atlanta Ballet and the U.S. Ski Team. With nine convenient locations throughout metro Atlanta, we're here to keep you and your family in the game! For more information, click here.

Four Questions Presented By Georgia Farm Bureau Insurance
1GHSF Daily asked Georgia head coaches to answer these four questions. We'll report from a different head coach each day.
Lenny Gregory, Centennial 
1. What is the most memorable game you've been a part of as a player or coach? "I would have to say beating Lowndes in 2008 at Grayson. Lowndes had the best high school team that I have ever seen. We played really good and somehow came out with a big win over the defending state champs from the previous year." [Gregory was Grayson's defensive coordinator in 2008. The Rams won 17-7.]
2. Which high school coach would you want your son to play for, and why? "Mickey Conn. I think he is one of the greatest human beings on the planet. My oldest son played for him and was a big reason why I took the job with Grayson back in 2008."
3. What is your pet peeve as a coach? "I can't stand when people put limitations on kids. I think every kid can improve and learn to love the game and contribute to their high school team."
4. Which GHSA policy or high school football rule would you most like to see changed? "I know it is a touchy topic right now, but I think the contact hours are unfair to teams that have to have two-way players. The larger schools that can two-platoon have an advantage over the smaller schools. I just think everything needs to be fair for the smaller schools that have to play schools that have larger student populations."
Georgia Farm Bureau Insurance is the presenting sponsor of the GHSA football state championships, Georgia High School Football Scoreboard Radio Show and state championship awards. Learn about GFB insurance products and many other services by clicking here.

Fall Metro Atlanta College Football Recruiting Fair
The 2015 Fall Metro Atlanta College Football Recruiting Fair will be held at The Conference Center atAtlanta Metropolitan State College on Dec. 1 and Dec. 8 (8 a.m.-5 p.m.). Colleges from across the country will be in attendance, looking for football prospects from the classes of 2016 and 2017.  There are only 80 slots available for high schools, so please visit our FRE Sports Web site or






Georgia High School Football Daily

OKGeorgia High School Football Daily is a free e-mail newsletter produced by Todd Holcomb and Chip Saye. Holcomb is a former lead high school football writer for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and co-founder and primary researcher behind the Georgia High School Football Historians Association. Saye is a 25-year veteran of the newspaper industry who has covered high school sports for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Athens Banner-Herald, Anderson (S.C.) Independent-Mail and Gwinnett Daily News.







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List Presented By First Commercial Real Estate
Semifinal perfection
The Class AAAAAA semifinals comprise four 13-0 teams. It has happened only four times in GHSA playoff history that all four semifinalists in one classification were unbeaten and untied. This is the first time it has happened since 1996, when the GHSA expanded the state playoffs to 32 teams. The last time it happened in the highest classification was 1960. Class AAA (the largest at the time) had only four regions in 1960, although two of them had region championship games preceding the four-team state playoffs.
1954 Class B
Claxton (10-0)
Mitchell County (11-0)
Model (11-0)
Thomson (11-0)
1960 Class AAA
Avondale (11-0)
North Fulton (11-0)
Richmond Academy (10-0)
Valdosta (10-0)
1995 Class A
Buford (13-0)
Lincoln County (13-0)
Macon County (13-0)
Manchester (13-0)
2015 Class AAAAAA
Colquitt County (13-0)
Grayson (13-0)
Mill Creek (13-0)
Roswell (13-0)
First Commercial Real Estate - Commercial & investment real estate brokerage in Valdosta-Lowndes County & South Georgia since 1982. Scott Alderman, Broker/President 229-245-1328.
Trivia Presented By Nike Coach of the Year Clinics
Four of the 28 head coaches in the semifinals are working at their alma maters. Who are they? Hint: All coach in Class A. (Answer Tuesday)
Answer to Wednesday's question: Parkview holds the record for most consecutive quarterfinal appearances in the highest classification with 11. The Panthers made the final eight each season from 1995 through 2005.
The Atlanta Nike Coach of the Year Clinic offers "Early Bird" specials for the 2016 clinic on Jan. 28-30! At the 2016 clinic, you can hear Dabo Swinney of Clemson, Mike Gundy of Oklahoma State, Doc Holliday of Marshall and Pat Narduzzi of Pittsburgh. One to five coaches can register for $65 each, and a staff of six or more can register for $350 per staff if registration is received by Dec. 1. Payment should be sent to: Nike Coach of the Year Atlanta, 606 Old Waynesville Road, Jesup, Ga., 31546. Click here for updated information, or contact Craig Davis at 912-294-5816 or
Internet TV Now
Internet TV Now sells Internet TV channels throughout Georgia and South Carolina. Schools may use these to broadcast any sport or other events such as graduations, plays or band concerts. The schools do all the broadcasting, which provides excellent learning opportunities for students. Our technical support is superb, and we provide marketing assistance. This can be fundraiser for booster clubs or other groups. Click herefor more information, or e-mail
More 2015 Sponsors
Games on the Web
1The NFHS Network will present live streaming of football games from around the state each week. To sign up for the network or watch the games, click here.


Playoff Scores, Pairings
Roswell 17, Collins Hill 10
Grayson 35, Westlake 28
Colquitt Co. 49, South Forsyth 31
Mill Creek 23, Archer 0
Roswell at Grayson
Colquitt Co. at Mill Creek
Dec. 12, 8 p.m., Georgia Dome
Allatoona 59, Houston Co. 47
Northgate 34, Kell 21
Ware Co. 46, Drew 21
Glynn Academy 24, Stockbridge 21
Northgate at Allatoona 
Ware Co. at Glynn Academy
Dec. 11, 8 p.m., Georgia Dome
Class AAAA
Woodward Academy 42, Marist 14
Buford 49, Thomson 7
Bainbridge 18, St. Pius 17
Cartersville 38, Jonesboro 14
Woodward Academy at Buford
Bainbridge at Cartersville
Dec. 12, 4:30 p.m., Georgia Dome
Class AAA
Westminster 51, Adairsville 21
Cedar Grove 41, Westside, Macon 25
Calhoun 33, Elbert Co. 30
Blessed Trinity 35, Dawson Co. 7
Westminster at Cedar Grove
Calhoun at Blessed Trinity
Dec. 11, 4:30 p.m., Georgia Dome
Class AA
Fitzgerald 54, Benedictine 28
Jefferson Co. 31, Rabun Co. 28
GAC 23, Brooks Co. 12
Pace Academy 33, Macon Co. 26
Fitzgerald at Jefferson Co.
Pace Academy at GAC
Dec. 12, 1 p.m., Georgia Dome
Class A (public)
Commerce 20, Marion Co. 7
Clinch Co. 50, Johnson Co. 34
Irwin Co. 21, Trion 0
ECI 34, Mount Zion, Carroll 31
Commerce at Clinch Co.
Irwin Co. at Emanuel Co. Institute
Dec. 11, 1 p.m., Georgia Dome
Class A (private)
Prince Avenue Christian 30, Savannah Christian 10
ELCA 31, Mount Paran Christian 7
Aquinas 28, Christian Heritage 27
Stratford Acd. 43, Pinecrest Acd. 15
ELCA at Prince Avenue Christian
Stratford Academy at Aquinas
Dec. 12, 10 a.m., Georgia Dome 


Our Title Sponsor
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MaxPreps is the "Official Statistician and Media Partner" for the Georgia High School Association and powers the GHSA region standings for all classifications. MaxPreps offers a free stat management and communication platform that enables coaches to submit schedules, scores, rosters and statistics. These statistics generate statewideleaderboards for rushing, passing, receiving and many other categories. According to the partnership, all GHSA member schools statewide must submit complete box score results to MaxPreps, regardless of classification. This information will be used to verify region standings and manage Class A power ratings. We invite you to join us and the thousands of other coaches who use MaxPreps as a part of their teams' tradition.