The weather on Friday, November 15 was cold and rainy, and in some places, windy. Fans, the loyal ones, braved the cold weather to cheer on their teams, but attendance was definitely lower than expected for the first round of GHSA playoff football.
McEachern easily won their game against North Paulding, playing them again for back-to-back wins on the season. The Indians were short on spectators, but they were still able to put 47 points on the board to send the North Paulding Wolfpack home to end their playoff hopes and season with a final score of 47-29. Backup QB Bryce Archie played the entire first quarter, but Carlos Del-Rio Wilson made his re-appearance in the second quarter after leaving the game last week right before halftime.
Hillgrove lost their post-season bid on the road against the Lowndes Vikings. After being on their heels for the majority of the first half, the Hawks found points right before halftime with a crucial pick-6 from Safety Andreas Keaton. Head coach Philip Ironsides decision to go for the two-point conversion proved to be wise and the Hawks cut the game to a one-possession lead right before the half, 16-8. However, penalties and emotions ran high in the second half and Hillgrove wasn’t able to put any more points on the board. Lowndes scored three more TDs in the second half to end Hillgrove’s season with a final score of 38-8.
Allatoona and Harrison both dominated their 6A opponents, moving on to second-round play with impressive home wins. The Bucs beat the Gainesville Red Elephants 49-7, while the Hoyas took care of the Winder-Barrow Bulldogs with a final score of 45-25.
Noth Cobb’s season ended with a tough loss at Colquitt County with the final score of 35-7. The Warriors blocked a punt late in the third quarter and immediately recovered it for a quick TD, which looked like it could be the start of gaining momentum, but it proved to be the only points the Warriors would get all night.
Four East Cobb teams made the first round: Kell, Sprayberry, Walton, and Wheeler, but only Kell and Walton will be continuing their seasons. Wheeler lost a tough game at Roswell, 31-0, and Sprayberry lost a heartbreaker at Lanier, losing by a single point, 14-15. Kell stayed ahead of the Columbia Eagles to win 48-32 and Walton won a close one at home against Newnan, 27-24.
Congratulations to all CCSD first round playoffs teams. Your seasons were inspiring to all of us. We look forward to more great games next week from Allatoona, Harrison, Kell, McEachern, and Walton!