DALTON — Dalton fell to Allatoona on Friday night in a battle for the likely second-place spot in the region, 17-14.
Dalton scored first on a 4th-and-1 quarterback sneak from Landon Allen with 4:07 remaining in the first quarter. Allatoona’s Jude Kelly connected on a field goal to make the score 7-3, but he would miss two other chances in the first half, including as time expired going into halftime.
Scoring was then back-and-forth in the second half as Jahmyr Gibbs scored on a 17-yard touchdown run just before end of the third quarter to extend Dalton’s lead, 14-3.
Allatoona (6-2-1, 6-1 Region 6AAAAAA) responded before the end of the third with a long touchdown from Dante Marshall to Asante Das to cut the Catamounts’ lead to 14-10. The Bucs finally took the lead 17-4 with just more than 10 minutes remaining with another Marshall touchdown pass.
Dalton (6-3, 4-3) couldn’t come up with enough down the stretch for a chance to take back the lead or to tie the game.
“We had some close plays,” Dalton coach Matt Land said. “We didn’t execute what we should have and couldn’t get it done.”
Land said his team was penalized seven times, compared to Allatoona’s five during the game, but the Catamounts felt the damage.
“We made mistakes that we can’t make against good teams,” he said. “They all came at very inopportune times.”
The Catamounts travel to Osborne to finish its regular-season next Friday night. Barring any upsets, Dalton should finish as the No. 4 seed from the region heading into the playoffs. Allatoona should finish as the No. 2 seed if it is to defeat Sequoyah next Friday.
“I’m super proud of our kids,” Land said. “They played from kickoff to the buzzer, and at the end of the day that’s all you can ask for.”