The third week of the prep football season is upon us with Wesleyan’s trip to Prince Avenue Christian in Bogart highlighting the action Sept. 6.
The Wolves were victorious in their season opener with a 30-19 triumph over Class 7A program Meadowcreek Aug. 23. Griffin Caldwell led the way offensively for Wesleyan with 174 rushing yards and two touchdowns, while the defensive unit benefited from the services of Josh Aspinwall, who had 10 tackles, a fumble recovery and an interception.
“Our summer training and conditioning program really paid dividends,” Wolves coach Franklin Pridgen said. “A year ago our two-way starters ran out of gas in the third quarter, but this year we had plenty left for a final push in the fourth to put the game away. Josh and J.D. Chipman starred on defense and Griffin and Tanner Bivins led the way for us on offense. Javy Martinez made his football debut as our new placekicker. It was an overall team effort and thrilling night for the Wolves.”
Wesleyan, which has been in the Class A Private each of the past seven years, visits fellow Class A program Prince Avenue, which has been in the postseason in nine consecutive years, including a semifinals appearance in 2018. The Wolverines also won their season opener by the score of 54-28 at Mount Vernon. Zach Dyer had 216 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns, two receiving and one kickoff return in the victory. Quarterback Brook Vandagriff had five total touchdowns, three passing and two rushing, for Prince Avenue.
One local battle of interest will be Westminster’s home tilt against St. Pius X. Both teams are looking to rebound from losses in their season openers Aug. 23. The Wildcats dropped their contest at Woodward 19-0. The Golden Lions fell at defending Class 4A state champion Blessed Trinity 28-10, with Jake Graham’s 1-yard touchdown run a highlight in the loss. Wesminster leads the lifetime series over St. Pius X 23-7, but the Golden Lions have won the last four contests, including a 35-9 victory in 2018.
Woodward’s next contest will be against the same Blessed Trinity on the road. The War Eagles are looking to build upon its Westminster win, which saw Mike Wright throw two touchdown passes, both to Hunter Sellers, and Aaron Washington post a team-high 12 tackles in the victory. Woodward has dropped all three of its previous contests against Blessed Trinity, including a 43-21 defeat in 2018.
North Atlanta won its season opener against Grady 40-19 Aug. 23, led by running back T.K. Mack, who ran for 303 yards and four touchdowns on the night. Teammate Wiley Hartley rushed for 210 yards and two TDs from the quarterback spot. The Warriors finished the contest with 564 rushing yards. Defensively, Sterling Fleury had a team-high five tackles and a sack for North Atlanta.
“It was great for the team and always good when you can rush for that many yards,” Warriors coach Sean O’Sullivan said. “Our offensive line is a strength and our wide receivers blocked on the perimeter. We were able to line up in some formations and get looks we wanted. We have a 24-hour rule so we’ve moved on to our next opponent. We’re working to get better from the mistakes we had in the first game.”
Next up for North Atlanta will be a home contest against KIPP Atlanta Collegiate. The Warriors have won all five previous meetings, including a 39-25 victory in 2018.
Lovett earned a 30-29 overtime home win over Greater Atlanta Christian in its opener Aug. 23. The Lions scored on their first overtime possession on a 15-yard touchdown catch by Ritter Windom from Blaine McAllister to take the 30-23 lead. The Spartans got a touchdown on its overtime possession, but Lovett’s Andrew Pinkston blocked the extra point attempt by Beck Naegele to conclude the contest. The win snapped the Lions’ six-game losing streak to the Spartans.
“I was really proud of the way our kids played late in the game,” Lovett coach Mike Muschamp said. “We executed well when we had to. I think that goes to our conditioning. There were several key plays that had to be made in order for us to complete the comeback, and they found a way to make it happen when they were close to exhaustion.”
McAllister finished the contest with 336 passing yards and three touchdowns, two passing and one rushing. Henry Beery had 266 all-purpose yards, Windom posted a team-high 8.5 tackles on defense and Pinkston blocked two extra points. The Lions visit BEST Academy and have won all five previous meetings, including a 43-0 victory in 2018.
Holy Innocents’ started its season strong with a 28-0 home win over Mount Pisgah Christian Aug. 24. The Golden Bears rushed for 430 yards in the victory.
“We played very well in defense and did a great job winning field position with our kicking game,” Holy Innocents’ coach Todd Winter said.
The Golden Bears are off this week.
Riverwood won its opener at home over Chattahoochee 46-10 Aug. 23.
“I feel the kids took a step in the right direction yet there are still areas that need to improve,” Raiders coach Robert Edwards said. “I feel trusting their coaches and the coaching played a big part in our win. The service team during the week prepared us for all phases of the game with the intensity and effort they brought in practice.”
Riverwood hosts Kennesaw Mountain Sept. 6 as it looks to get revenge from last season’s 31-26 loss.
Pace earned a 7-6 road win at New Manchester Aug. 23 to open its season. The Knights visit Monroe Area in their next contest Sept. 6.
North Springs visits Denmark Sept. 6. The Spartans look to rebound from their 48-19 road loss to Fellowship Christian in their season opener Aug. 23. Santino Gaudreau threw for 221 yards and two touchdowns, while teammate Neriyan Brown had 11 catches for 169 yards and three touchdowns in the loss. North Springs dropped its contest to Denmark 39-32 in 2018.
Mount Vernon returns to action at First Presbyterian. Blake Kytle threw for 224 yards and three touchdowns in the Mustangs’ loss to Prince Avenue in the season opener. Mount Vernon won last season’s contest against First Presbyterian 41-17 in the lone lifetime meeting of the two programs.
Rounding out action Sept. 6 will be Marist hosting Canyon Springs (Nevada) in the first lifetime meeting of the two programs. Whitefield, which won its season opener over Cherokee Bluff 26-3, is off this week.
Game of the Week
Game: Wesleyan Wolves at Prince Avenue Christian Wolverines
Date: Sept. 6
Last meeting: Prince Avenue 48, Wesleyan 28 (Aug. 31, 2018)
All-time series: tied 2-2