GHSF Daily’s Chip Saye ranks the most surprising and notable results of the weekend:
1. North Cobb 36, North Gwinnett 29: North Cobb gave no indication in a lopsided 38-20 season-opening loss to Class AAAAA Northside of Warner Robins (ranked No. 1 this week) that it could compete with the top teams in AAAAAA. The Warriors did more than compete, though, upsetting then-No. 2 North Gwinnett on Tyler Queen’s 1-yard touchdown run with 39 seconds remaining.
2. B.E.S.T Academy 14, Callaway 7: B.E.S.T. almost pulled off one of the biggest upsets in playoff history last season, losing to Carver of Columbus 38-32 in four overtimes in the first round. Looking back, that might not have been such a fluke. The Eagles opened this season with a victory against a Callaway team that was ranked No. 3 in AAA last week. The computer Maxwell Ratings had projected Callaway as a 31-point favorite in this game.
3. Westminster 13, Lovett 10: Defending state champion Lovett, ranked No. 2 in Class AA last week, had its 10-game winning streak broken by its biggest rival. Westminster, a AAA team that was unranked last week, leads the all-time series against the Lions 17-10 but lost in 2012 and 2013. Lovett must rebound quickly as it faces AAAA No. 4 Marist this week.
4. Peach County 19, Warner Robins 0: Peach County’s 2013 season ended with a 56-16 loss to Washington County, the most points allowed in school history. In came a new defensive coordinator (David Shores), and the result was a shutout against a Warner Robins team that beat the Trojans 54-21 last year. Peach County plays rival Perry this week.
5. Blessed Trinity 42, St. Pius 20: This game was projected as fairly even by the Maxwell Ratings (St. Pius was a four-point favorite), but it didn’t play out that way on the field as Blessed Trinity led 28-7 at halftime and cruised from there. Blessed Trinity jumped from No. 6 to No. 3 in the Class AAA rankings, while St. Pius fell from No. 7 to unranked in AAAA.
6. Stockbridge 33, Eagle’s Landing Christian 3: Stockbridge was expected to win this game, projected by the Maxwell Ratings as a 15-point favorite. But the 30-point margin was Eagle’s Landing Christian’s most-lopsided loss since Lincoln County beat the Chargers 34-0 in the 2006 playoffs, and it dropped ELCA to 0-2 for the first time since 2009.
7. Athens Christian 31, Athens Academy 14: Athens Academy has won seven region championships since Athens Christian moved to the GHSA in 2000. Athens Christian is still seeking its first, but the Eagles are on top of the Region 8-A standings after beating Athens Academy for the third time in four seasons. Athens Academy still leads the series 8-3.
8. Loganville 28, Monroe Area 12: Monroe Area’s 11-1 season in 2013 included a 48-21 victory against Loganville in the season opener. Loganville turned the tables this season, ending a two-game losing streak in the series, which Monroe Area leads 18-15. Loganville went on to finish 5-5 last season and narrowly missed a playoff berth in Region 8-AAAAA.
9. Cherokee 42, North Forsyth 14: Third-year coach Josh Shaw’s rebuilding project is picking up steam at Cherokee. The Warriors are 2-0, scoring 42 points for the second consecutive game, and beat a North Forsyth team that beat them 34-27 last season. Cherokee was 1-9 the year before Shaw’s arrival, went 1-9 again in 2012 and was 5-5 last year.
10. Pacelli 44, Mount de Sales 10: The return to GHSA football was a rough one for Mount de Sales, which had played in the Georgia Independent School Association since 1980. The Cavaliers’ last game in the GHSA came in 1979, when they lost to Herschel Walker’s Johnson County team 21-0 in the Class A semifinals. Mount de Sales was 3-8 last season.
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