The football postseason has resumed for local programs still in contention for a state championship.
Cedar Grove began its defense of the Class AAA state championship with a first-round home game against Adairsville on Nov. 10. The Saints, who are the top seed from Region 5AAA, earned a 48-13 victory. Jadon Haselwood started the scoring with a touchdown reception early in the first quarter. Xavier Dennis’ rushing TD later in the quarter increased the lead to 14-0. Haselwood returned a punt return for a score in the second quarter to give Cedar Grove a 21-3 lead into halftime. Third quarter scores on a Darrell Neal run and a Haselwood catch gave the Saints control of the game. Dennis also threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to Israel Spivey in the fourth quarter.
The Saints, who increased their winning streak to 21 games, hosted Dawson County, the second seed from Region 7AAA, on Nov. 17. The Tigers won their first-round home match over Hart County 49-14 on Nov. 10. Cedar Grove won its second-round game 58-13 and hosted Pike County on Friday.
Marist entered the Class AAAA state playoffs undefeated on the season and opened with a home contest against Madison County on Nov. 10. The War Eagles, who are the top seed from Region 7AAAA, emerged with a 38-14 victory. Chase Abshier had a team-high 70 rushing yards and two touchdowns while also throwing a 28-yard TD pass to John FitzPatrick. Chris Zowine had a rushing TD and Josh McDermond returned an interception for a score in the win.
Marist hosted Cedartown for its second-round game on Nov. 17. The Bulldogs won their first-round home game over Northwest Whitfield 47-14. The War Eagles earned a 31-18 win and visited Burke County on Friday.
St. Pius X is also in the Class AAAA playoffs. The Golden Lions entered the postseason as the top seed from Region 7AAAA and hosted Madison County in their first-round game on Nov. 10. St. Pius ran for 344 yards as a team and emerged with a 38-14 victory. Jason Jones rushed for 104 yards while Samuel Schwaner had two rushing TDs.
The Golden Lions hosted Troup for its second-round game on Nov. 17. The Tigers, the third seed from Region 5AAAA won their first-round road game at Heritage 31-7. St. Pius X won the game 43-35 and visited Woodward Academy on Friday.
The Class AAAAA playoffs included three local teams from Region 5AAAAA. Arabia Mountain was the top seed from the region and hosted North Springs for its first-round game on Nov. 10.
The Rams earned a 35-21 victory led by Bryson Williams who threw for 198 yards and three touchdowns. Joshua Campbell rushed for 107 yards and touchdown while Chandler Martin posted 10 tackles on defense for Arabia Mountain.
The Rams hosted Carrollton, the second seed from Region 7AAAAA, for its second-round contest on Nov. 17. The Trojans won its first-round game at home over Clarke Central 35-16. Arabia Mountain dropped the contest 44-0 and won nine games this season.
Southwest DeKalb earned the second seed from the region and hosted Banneker for its first-round game on Nov. 11. The Panthers earned a 35-17 victory led by three touchdown passes and a TD run from Justin Tomlin. Michael Pace and Aquil Muhammad had touchdown catches while Jamel Starks had a touchdown run for SW DeKalb.
The Panthers visited Rome, the defending state champions and the top seed from Region 7AAAAA on Nov. 17. The Wolves won their first-round home game over Cedar Shoals 63-13. SW Dekalb lost the game 56-0 and earned eight wins this season.
Miller Grove was the third team from the region and visited Jackson (Atlanta) for its first-round game on Nov. 10. The Wolverines fell 14-0 in the contest and ended their season with five wins.
Tucker entered the Class AAAAAA playoffs as the top seed out of Region 4AAAAAA. The Tigers hosted Lakeside (Evans) in its first-round game on Nov. 10 and earned a 55-7 victory. Taurean Taylor rushed for 123 yards and two touchdowns while teammate Tyler Hughey had a team-high 124 rushing yards and a TD run in the victory. Gerry Vaughn had two rushing touchdowns and Christopher Whitaker had a TD run as well. Defensively, Camron Carter and Michael Harris each had six tackles for Tucker’s defense. Isaiah Dunson had an interception as well.
The Tigers hosted Northside (Warner Robins), the third seed from Region 1AAAAAA, in their second-round game on Nov. 17. The Eagles earned a 24-21 road win at Brunswick in the first round. The Tucker/Northside results weren’t available at press time.
Stephenson qualified for the Class AAAAAA playoffs as the second seed from Region 4AAAAAA. The Jaguars hosted Heritage in the first round and fell 20-7. Caleb Pruitt threw for 252 yards and two touchdowns in the loss. Zae Garland had a team-high 17 tackles for Stephenson’s defense. The Jaguars won seven games this season.