GHSA Football Playoffs Elite 8 Preview - PSN Game of the Week Westlake vs Allatoona
On Friday, several Atlanta Metro area football teams will be vying for a chancing to advance to the final four round of the Georgia High School Association state playoffs.
The Grayson Rams, ranked No. 1 in the state and No. 4 in the nation, will host West Forsyth as both teams come in as the No. 1 seeds out of their respective regions. The Rams will be without running back and Clemson commit Phil Mafah, who suffered an ankle injury in the opening round of the playoffs and will be out the for the remainder of the season, but USC commit and transfer, Jake Garcia will be set to start at quarterback for the Rams. Garcia struggled a bit in the passing game last week against Harrison, as he finished with 85 yards, no passing touchdowns and an interception. Garcia did have one rushing touchdown in the Rams' win. West Forsyth is coming off a 17-16 win over North Gwinnett. Offensively West Forsyth struggled as they only produced one offensive touchdown. Their only other touchdown came courtesy of a Dalton Tjong kick return.
The Parkview Panthers and the Collins Hill Eagles will go head to head on Friday in the only match up featuring two programs out of the same school district facing each other. The Panthers are coming off what many consider an upset win over East Coweta. Parkview sophomore quarterback, ColinHouck finished with four touchdowns in the Parkview win. Collins Hill is coming off a 17-6 win over Denmark in a game in which both defense played well throughout most of the game, however, it would be the Eagles' defense holding the longest as the Danes were only able to score a pair of field goals.
The Norcross Blue Devils look to keep their playoff run and undefeated season alive when they host Colquitt County on Friday. Norcross is seeking their first state title win since 2013. Last week the Blue Devils got a dominating ground game out of running back Jahni Clarke who rushed for 206 yards and three touchdowns and quarterback Mason Kaplan who rushed for 110 yards and a touchdown. Colquit County is coming off a 35-12 win over Walton last week. The Packers really did not get things going until the second half as they were only leading 7-3 at halftime. The spark the Packers needed to get the win came from the defense as they returned three interception for touchdowns in the win. On the offensive end, Colquitt quarterback Zane Touchton and running back Charlie Pace each rushed for a touchdown. Touchton threw for 125 yards and one interception.
The Milton Eagles will host the Lowndes Vikings in the 7A playoffs in a rematch from the 2018 7A semifinals, in which the Eagles won prior to winning their first state title in that season. Milton had to go without starting quarterback Devin Ferrell in last week's win over Archer and it yet to be seen if he will be back for the eagles this week. Lowndes held off North Cobb in a game where they trailed 13-7 heading into the fourth quarter. The Vikings would get two rushing touchdowns in the fourth quarter, one by Jaccuri Brown and another by Alijah McKeithern, while their defense held the Warriors scoreless in the second half as they picked up the win.
The Westlake Lions are set the Allatoona Buccaneers, the only school left from the Cobb County School District, in the 6A playoffs. The Lions got one of the best performances of the season from quarterback R.J, Johnson, who finished with 314 passing yards and four touchdowns in the win. Westlake Corzavious smart rushed for 119 yards on eight carries with one touchdown in the victory. Allatoona picked up a 31-6 win over Dacula last week.
The Langston Hughes Panthers will travel north to take on the Buford Wolves, who is competing in the midst of their first 6A season following last year when they won the 5A title. The Panthers' have been dominant on the defensive end as they are only of six teams remaining that have not allowed any points through the first two rounds of the playoffs. Panthers' freshman quarterback, Prentiss Noland finished with 169 passing yards and two passing touchdowns and an interception in the win. The Wolves are playing in their fifth classification and have won state title in all of the previous classifications they have played in. Last week, Buford's offense totaled five rushing touchdowns as running back, Gabe Ervin rushed for two of those touchdown and 160 yards in the win.