Game: Campbell (3-1) at Peachtree Ridge (2-2), 7:30 p.m.
Last year: Peachtree Ridge 16, Campbell 14 (Nov. 24, 2006)
All-time series: Peachtree Ridge leads 1-0
Prediction: Campbell 27, Peachtree Ridge 20
After starting the season 3-0 for the first time in 15 years, Campbell suffered its first loss last week, a 41-21 defeat at Roswell.
Now, the Spartans are looking to get back on a winning streak as they travel to Peachtree Ridge on Friday.
This will be the first regular season match-up between the two programs. The last time the teams faced off was in the second round of Class AAAAA state playoffs in 2006, with the Lions winning 16-14. Now, the Spartans are looking for their first win against a 2-2 Peachtree Ridge team coming off a 25-10 loss to Lanier.
The Lions’ offense is averaging 7.5 points a game, and their two wins were against Discovery 10-0 and a 7-6 win over Centennial.
“(Peachtree Ridge) is very athletic and they run really well,” Campbell coach Howie DeCristofaro said. “And we are the opposite of that, so we will have to figure out a way to slow them down and not get beat up.”
To do so, DeCristofaro said his team has to improve in every phase of the game.
“We have to focus on ourselves and quit making mistakes,” he said. “When I look at the film from Friday (against Roswell), we just did not line up right, we did not block the right people, we did not throw to the open receivers, so we have to get better every week.”
Four games into the season, the Spartans offense has been led by quarterback Luke Marble, who has thrown for 743 yards and eight touchdowns, and Jo Phillips, who has run for 391 yards and five scores.
The defense, which has allowed 17.25 points per game, is led by Brandon Shelton and David Moncrief, who have a combined 66 tackles.
DeCristofaro said despite the loss, he thinks his players are still in the right mindset.
“(I told them) ‘hey you got two choices, you can either wallow in self pity or you can bounce back up, and let’s get after it,’” DeCristofaro said.
By Anna Snyder
MDJ Sports Writer
Game: Milton (3-1) at McEachern (2-3), 7:30 p.m.
Last year: Milton 16, McEachern 3
All-time series: Series tied 2-2
Prediction: Milton 21, McEachern 14
McEachern will close out its non-region schedule hosting Milton at Walter Cantrell Stadium on Friday.
The Indians’ non-region schedule has been one of their toughest to date, and the caliber of opponents has led to inconsistent play, but coach Franklin Stephens said the upside to playing quality opposition early outweighs the inconsistent play.
“You can overcome inconsistency,” he said. “Sometimes your talent can be inconsistent. Sometimes the people you play can bring out inconsistency and expose you. But inconsistency can be overcome with focus, fundamentals and effort.”
McEachern will need those traits versus a Milton team that is averaging 32 points per game while holding opponents to 18.75 per contest. The Eagles have been ranked among the top five in the state since the start of the season, and our led by quarterback Devin Farrell, who has completed 61.1% of his passes with seven touchdowns. The team’s second leading rusher, Farrell also has 158 yards on the ground along with two touchdowns.
Debron Gatling has 189 receiving yards and six touchdowns, while five-star defensive lineman Lebbeus Overton, the son of Kennesaw State athletic director Milton Overton, leads the defense.
“They’re a physical team that can move the ball on the ground or through the air and can make you look inconsistent if you aren’t playing your best,” Stephens said. “Overton is one of the best players I’ve seen. They have a good quarterback, some big running backs and a big-time receiver. They have a great mix of talent.”
McEachern enters the contest averaging 28.8 points per game, while giving up 27.2 per outing. Bryce Archie is completing 46.8% percent of his passes for 743 yards and nine touchdowns to pace the Indians. Makari Bodiford has 319 rushing yards and four touchdowns, while Kaleb Webb has 450 receiving yards with seven scores.
By Carlton D. White
MDJ Sports Correspondent