Friday football roundup

Ron Hughes

Lovett won again, improving to 4-0 after a dominating 28-7 win over Class AAA No. 2 St. Pius X. Lovejoy barely avoided an upset at East Coweta with a last-minute touchdown drive while ranked AAAAA teams rolled to easy wins.


See those recaps and more below.



Alpharetta 31, West Forsyth 17: Visiting Alpharetta used a pair of Vito Priore touchdown passes to take a 17-10 lead into halftime. Alpharetta’s Austin King opened the second half with a 50-yard touchdown pass to Andre Herton. Chase Stratton blocked a third quarter West Forsyth punt that set up a 1-yard quarterback sneak by King.

Archer 27, Parkview 7: Gabe Tiller completed 11 of 14 passes for 155 yards and threw touchdowns to K.J. Palmer and Kyle Davis. Palmer finished with three receptions for 70 yards, while the visiting Tigers also got 114 yards on 18 carries by Randy Nails. Archer led 14-0 early and 14-7 at the half.

Centennial 45, Johns Creek 34: Host Centennial answered an early 14-13 Johns Creek lead with two Christian Robinson touchdown receptions to take a 27-14 lead into the half. Centennial quarterback Luke Able opened the third quarter with an 18-yard touchdown pass to Alex Richemond and running back Caden Herring iced the game with a 62-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

Central Gwinnett 15, Berkmar 12: Central Gwinnett used a safety in the first quarter and a return of the ensuing free kick by Major Bellamy to edge Berkmar. The Black Knights’ narrow victory clinched their first win of the season and knocked the visiting Patriots from the ranks of the unbeaten. This was Central Gwinnett’s third consecutive win over Berkmar and fourth in the last five years.

Coffee 18, Mundy’s Mill 14: Host Coffee won through the air as Tyreke Polk threw for 147 yards and two touchdowns. The first touchdown was a 42-yard pass to Jalen Wilkerson followed by a 24-yard touchdown pass to Anthony Bussell. The Trojans’ rushing attack totaled 198 yards on 37 attempts. Polk also rushed for a two-point conversion.

Etowah 31, Wheeler 14: Keith Gordon had an 8-yard touchdown reception and a 1-yard touchdown run for visiting Etowah. The Eagles had a rushing touchdown each from quarterback John Oliver (40 yards) and one from running back Brandon Engle (25 yards). Edwin Alfaro added a 48-yard field goal for Etowah.

Langston Hughes 34, Rockdale County 0: Host Langston Hughes was led by Robert Saunders, who returned a punt 65 yards for a touchdown and rushed seven yards for a touchdown in the second half. Emile Sexton also had a rushing touchdown of four yards, and Keenan Humphrey hooked up with Bingo Morton for a 12-yard touchdown. The Hughes defense had three interceptions and two fumble recoveries.

Lassiter 42, Cherokee 41: Visiting Cherokee trailed 42-28 with six minutes remaining and nearly pulled off a miraculous comeback. Spencer Ashley tossed five touchdown passes in the game including a potential game-tying 20-yard score to Andrew Harris with less than a minute to go, but the Warriors missed the extra point. Lassiter’s Will Anderson threw three touchdown passes in the victory.

Lovejoy 39, East Coweta 35: Host Lovejoy trailed 35-20 late in the third quarter before scoring 19 unanswered points. Jeremiah Kirkland scored three rushing touchdowns for Lovejoy and quarterback Quintarius Neely finished with three touchdown passes, including a 27-yard game-winning throw to Preston Williams. East Coweta quarterback Bryce Gemmel rushed for a touchdown and passed two scores to Markell Boston.

Norcross 38, Duluth 3: The Blue Devils evened their mark at 2-2 by blowing away their Gwinnett County rivals. Duluth’s woes continue to mount up as the squad falls to 0-4. With the exception of their 9-3 defeat in season opener versus Berkmar, all of the Wildcats’ losses have been by double figures.

North Gwinnett 63, Meadowcreek 0: Quarterback Hayden Sphire was 12 of 15 passing for 201 yards and six touchdowns, all in the first half. Caleb Scott caught three touchdown passes, and Nate Brown and Almonzo Brown caught two and one, respectively. C.J. Leggett added a rushing touchdown for the host Bulldogs. Dante Sawyer returned a fumble 15 yards for a score.

Shiloh 21, South Gwinnett 14: Shiloh scored twice in the fourth quarter to pull out a comeback win at home, getting touchdown runs of 70 and 26 yards from Charles Shavers. Shavers had 222 yards rushing and all three touchdowns for the Generals. Shiloh scored its last touchdown with less than a minute to play after turning South Gwinnett over on downs.

Valdosta 41, Newton 14: Valdosta running back Malcolm Joseph rushed for 121 yards and touchdowns of 32, 7 and 78 yards. Host Valdosta led 31-0 at the half, and quarterbacks Seth Shuman and Mac Loudermilk each had a touchdown pass. Newton got touchdown runs of 55 and 12 yards from sophomore running back Atrice Hobbs.

Walton 47, Woodstock 40: Deontae Robinson gave host Woodstock a 20-10 second quarter lead on a 1-yard touchdown run.Walton quarterback Price Wilson led the comeback with touchdown passes to Bayley Wolff, Maurice Gibson and sophomore Chad Clay. Sophomore running back Karekin Brooks scored two touchdowns for Walton and Christian Lucas added a pair of field goals.




Allatoona 49, Lithia Springs 0: Josh Bettistea rushed 10 times for 110 yards and two touchdowns for host Allatoona. Russell Holimon had six carries for 97 yards and a score in addition to a touchdown reception. D.J. Ezell and Cameron Bowen also had touchdown catches. Quarterbacks Connor Larson and Brandon Rainey combined for 155 passing yards and three scores.

Flowery Branch 48, Loganville 14: Flowery Branch quarterback Jackson McDonald rushed for 96 yards and three touchdowns to go along with 145 yards passing with a touchdown. Davante King caught a short touchdown pass, had a 52-yard touchdown run and also had a 33-yard interception return for a score. Flowery Branch led 48-0 at halftime.

Gainesville 49, Apalachee 6: Deshaun Watson completed 24 of 29 passes for 372 yards and three touchdowns to lead visiting Gainesville past Apalachee. Watson also ran for a 12-yard touchdown. Rodney Lackey hauled in two of Watson’s scoring strikes while Jay Gaudlock caught nine balls for 149 yards and a touchdown. Michael Byrd added 108 yards on 11 rushes for the Red Elephants.

Lee County 43, Morrow 14: Lee County’s Kevin Hopkins set the tone for the game by returning the opening kickoff 75 yards for a touchdown. Stephen Collier threw a 34-yard touchdown pass to Devontae Seay and Collier also ran for three scores to lead the host Trojans. Lee County led 28-6 at the half and 43-6 at the end of three quarters before Morrow tacked on a late touchdown.

Mays 43, Southwest DeKalb 24: Quarterback Ayinde Russell threw touchdown passes to Randrecous Davis and Tyshawn Brown and also had a 12-yard rushing score for Mays at Panthersville Stadium. Derontay Langford ran for three touchdowns, and Rowmartis Bell had a 43-yard touchdown run.

McIntosh 48, Drew 40: Host McIntosh took a 24-14 lead into halftime after Andrew Johnson’s touchdown passes to Victor Nguyen and Sean Ingram. Drew quarterback Joseph Newman competed a 21-yard touchdown pass to Demarco Smith in the third quarter to cut the deficit to 24-20, but Johnson answered with 71- and 61-yard touchdown runs and a 14-yard touchdown throw to Joshua Ange.

Osborne 5, Cambridge 0: A defensive battle went the way of Osborne, which won its Homecoming game for the first time in 19 years. The Cardinals’ lone offensive scoring came from Vicente Gutierrez, who kicked a 24-yard field goal. Osborne also recorded a safety when Brian Ammons blocked a punt in Cambridge’s endzone.

Pope 28, Northview 24: Logan Carr rushed for a 1-yard touchdown and caught two touchdown passes from Taylor Wolf to lead Pope to a home win. Wolf also rushed for a 2-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter. For Northview, D.J. Pearson threw touchdown passes to Connor Segraves and Matty Biondich, and also ran for a 10-yard score.

Sequoyah 32, Riverwood 28: Sequoyah bounced back from last week’s defeat against Cherokee by squeaking out a win versus the Raiders. All of Sequoyah’s touchdowns were courtesy of the running game. Blake Miller led the way with three scores. Teammates D.J. Austin and Lex Lauletta added one apiece.

Stephenson 42, Lakeside-DeKalb 0: Dallas Rivers had three rushing touchdowns for host Stephenson at Hallford Stadium. Dexter Neal caught a 5-yard touchdown pass from Dewann Ford, and Khalil Ladler returned a kickoff for a touchdown to start the second half. Cortese Logan also had a rushing score, and kicker Wisdom Nzidee was 6-for-6 on extra points.

Tucker 55, Dunwoody 9: Running back Elijah Sullivan had 134 yards and a touchdown on eight carries for host Tucker, and quarterback Dominique Sanders scored twice on the ground in addition to a 3-for-4 night passing with two scores to receiver Detric Dukes. Cornerback Yaquis Shelley had an interception return for a touchdown for the Tigers.

Villa Rica 20, Paulding County 17 (OT): Kaleb Cosper scored on a 1-yard touchdown in the first overtime to lead visiting Villa Rica past Paulding County. The Wildcats led 14-0 before Paulding County tied things up in the fourth quarter to force the extra frame. Villa Rica also got touchdown passes from Kevin Martin, who connected with Cosper and Ty Hill.

Class AAAA

Dutchtown 49, Riverdale 28: Visiting Dutchdown scored 28 points in the opening quarter, but Riverdale cut the lead to 28-14 at the half with a Torre Washington touchdown pass and a 25-yard Nathan Williams touchdown run. Dutchtown’s Malik Barkley and Matthew Daniels iced the game with fourth quarter touchdown runs.

Marist 67, Therrell 6: Marist scored early and often against host Therrell, jumping out to a 29-0 lead at the end of the first quarter as it cruised to an easy victory. All of Marist’s scores came on big plays of double-digit yardage. Carter Miller led the way with two touchdowns.


Class AAA

Blessed Trinity 30, White County 0: The Titans evened their record at 2-2 on the season after blanking White County. Quarterback Conor Davis recorded a touchdown with both his arm and his feet to lead the team. Milton Shelton had the biggest play of the night, scoring on a 75-yard run.

Cartersville 55, North Murray 15: Host Cartersville led 55-7 after three quarters. Quarterback Brooks Barden ran in a pair of scores in the first half and threw four touchdown passes in the third quarter. Mark Quattlebaum caught Cartersville’s final score on a 57-yard completion from Barden and scored a defensive touchdown in the first half.

Decatur 42, Clarkston 10: At the Decatur High Stadium, freshman wide out Dennis Bell’s first four varsity receptions, including two for touchdowns, led Decatur to its first 4-0 start since 2005. Clarkston took a 3-0 lead with 6:57 left in the first on junior Santino Jerke’s booming 55-yard field goal. But Decatur ran off six straight touchdowns – Bell had catches of 15 and 33 yards for TDs – to take a 42-3 lead with 11:48 left in the game. Decatur junior Demetrius Harris had a career-high 128 yards on 11 carries, while senior Nick Bentley added 85 yards on 8 attempts (all in first half), with each back scoring a touchdown apiece. Clarkston falls to 1-4. For Decatur, which first fielded football team in 1913, it was the 475th all-time victory against 411 losses.

Woodward Academy 30, Westminster 15: Terry Googer had 22 carries for 190 yards and three scores for host Woodward Academy. Googer also completed seven of nine passes for 94 yards and a score. The War Eagles led 23-0 in the third quarter before Westminster pulled to within 23-15. Woodward iced it with a 49-yard scoring jaunt by Googer.


Class AA

Lovett 28, St. Pius 7: Grant Haley scored twice in the first half as the host Lions sprinted to a 28-0 halftime lead. Haley finished with 87 yards while Jay Harris led Lovett with 160 yards on 22 carries with a touchdown. The Lions finished with 296 rushing yards. St. Pius had an 86-yard touchdown run by Jack Pelt.


Class A

Brookstone 24, Wesleyan 17: Jack Raines, Sam Nadem and Miller Paige all made trips to the end zone to pace the host Cougars. With the victory, Brookstone improves to 2-1. Wesleyan remains winless, falling to 0-4. In addition to his touchdown, Paige showed his versatility as a place kicker and recorded a field goal.

Christian Heritage 41, Fellowship Christian 0: Following a scoreless first quarter between both squads, Christian Heritage exploded for 20 points in the second quarter and never looked back to secure the win. With the win, the Lions improved to 3-1 on the season. Fellowship Christian falls from the ranks of the unbeaten, dropping to 3-1.

Darlington 31, King’s Ridge Christian 7: Darlington led 17-0 at halftime and scored the game’s first 31 points before visiting King’s Ridge Christian mustered a late touchdown. The victorious Tigers got touchdown runs from Will Mathis and Trey Edge and a 40-yard touchdown pass from Logan Rice to Jeremiah McClure. Sloane Peters added a 34-yard field goal for Darlington.

First Presbyterian 28, Pace Academy 18: Malik Staples had two touchdowns, one on a 5-yard reception from Kevin Johnson in the second quarter and another on a 3-yard run, also in the second for visiting Pace Academy. Denzel Franklin added a 44-yard touchdown run in the third for Pace, but two third quarter scores by First Presbyterian denied the Knights.


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