Last year: Brookstone 26, Mount Paran 6
All-time series: Brookstone leads 1-0
Prediction: Mount Paran 24, Brookstone 20
Mount Paran Christian had an impressive 35-7 season-opening victory over Our Lady of Mercy last Friday, and it did it with a mystery man.
Emoni Williams wasn’t exactly a mystery man, but he wasn’t on the original team roster that was created this summer.
“We’d been trying to get him back every year,” coach Mitch Jordan said. “There was actually a group of guys that haven’t played since their eighth-grade year and they all came back this year.”
The junior running back also plays on the basketball and baseball teams, but he had taken the last two years off from playing on Friday nights in the fall.
In Williams’ first game back, Jordan couldn’t have asked for much more.
Williams had four receptions for 140 yards and touchdowns of 3, 41, and 72 yards. He also carried the ball three times for 15 yards.
While Jordan said Williams may have been in the program before, he still had to work for his position on the field, and Jordan said there was a lot of competition at the running back spot with Taylor Trammell and Dorian Walker. Trammell and Walker combined for more than 170 yards on Friday.
— By Ericka Birdsong
MDJ Sports Writer
Game: Walker at North Cobb Christian, 7:30 p.m.
Last year: Walker 54, North Cobb Christian 14
All-time series: Walker leads 1-0
Prediction: Walker 35, North Cobb Christian 7
Walker’s lack of a rushing attack in its season-opening win over Temple is a little deceiving.
In its 21-0 shutout two weeks ago, the Wolverines logged nine rushing yards, but much of the damage came when quarterback Cameron Bloebaum was sacked six times for loss of more than 30 yards.
Bradley Moore finished with 24 yards rushing and J.T. Moore had 13, which still isn’t great. That is currently being addressed for its game Friday against North Cobb Christian.
“You have to take those negative yards out,” Walker coach John East said. “There were assignment miscues and we’re still working on our passing game. We did a good job protecting Cameron against Temple, but our formations must be correct, and they are correctable errors. We ran the ball better than people might think.”
Bloebaum had 150 yards passing against Temple and threw for all three of Walker’s touchdowns, but he got significant help from Walker’s defensive play.
Walker’s defense held the opposition to just 155 yards, forced two turnovers and had an impressive goal-line stand at the end of the game to preserve the shutout.
It wasn’t an easy debut for first-year coach Scott Ryle as North Cobb Christian lost a 42-7 to Duval Charter in Jacksonville, Fla.
What the Eagles will build on for this week is holding a more physical Duval team to just 12 points in the second half. Mark Watson paced North Cobb Christian with 84 yards on 23 carries.
— By Adam Carrington
Game: Riverside Military (0-0) at Whitefield Academy (0-1), 7:30 p.m.
Last year: Whitefield 41, Riverside Military 0
All-time series: Whitefield leads 1-0
Prediction: Whitefield 35, Riverside Military 7
Whitefield Academy’s season-opener saw the Wolfpack fall behind 31-0 at halftime. Whitefield eventually lost 38-23.
Coach Jimmy Fields hopes that his team can shake off another slow start and get some points on the board early this week against Riverside Military.
“Getting off to a slow start (against Pace) is putting it kindly,” he said. “We got hit in the mouth.
“Pace had a lot to do with our slow start. We committed a lot of turnovers, and when you do that, you’re not helping yourself no matter who you’re playing. We didn’t set ourselves up for the kind of start we wanted to have.”
While Whitefield’s start wasn’t that great, it finished strong, as the Wolfpack outscored the Knights 23-7 in the second half.
“The second half was a bright spot for us,” Fields said. “We fought through some adversity and held Pace to a touchdown. We can build from that and look for redemption Friday.”
— By Carlton D. White