Second-round previews: Class A (private)

(Daniel Varnado/Special to AJC)

(Daniel Varnado/Special to AJC)

*Pinecrest Academy (8-3) at No. 7 Wesleyan (8-2): Pinecrest Academy’s 14-7 victory over Brookstone last week was its second playoff win since moving from the GISA in 2010. QB Ryan McCarthy rushed for 72 yards, passed for 41 yards and scored both touchdowns, including the game-winner with about 30 seconds left to cap an eight-minute drive. Wesleyan, which had a first-round bye, is 1-4 in playoff games since reaching the semifinals in 2010, although the past four seasons were spent in AA. Wolves junior QB Banks Ramsey has passed for 2,317 yards and 28 TDs. Junior George Bielan (98 carries, 559 yards, seven TDs) is the leading rusher.

*First Presbyterian (7-4) at No. 1 Eagle’s Landing Christian (10-0):First Presbyterian gets about 60 percent of its offense from the passing game, but the Vikings rushed for a season-high 278 yards in a 35-10 first-round victory over Aquinas. C.J. Harris ran for 171 yards and leads the team with 783. QB Dalton Cox is 166-of-276 passing for 2,120 yards and 20 TDs. ELCA, the 2015 state champion and No. 1 seed this year, has won 18 consecutive games by an average margin of 37.4 points. Trevor Gear has rushed for 965 yards and 14 TDs. Brayden Rush has passed for 771 yards and rushed for 326.

*No. 9 Stratford Academy (8-3) at No. 5 Tattnall Square (10-0):Tattnall Square beat Stratford Academy 7-3 on Oct. 28 in a game the clinched the subregion title in 7-A Division A, and the Trojans went on win the region championship. Ahmad Barron, Tattnall Square’s leading rusher, scored the game’s only touchdown on a 40-yard run with 3:12 remaining. Stratford’s Kasey Sanders, who had 118 yards and two touchdowns rushing in a 35-7 victory over Holy Innocents’ last week, ran for 108 yards in the first meeting between the Macon rivals. Tattnall Square leads the series 27-22 going back to their days in the GISA.

*Savannah Christian (7-3) at No. 4 Calvary Day (9-0): This is a rematch of their Nov. 4 game, won by Calvary 28-14 in the regular-season finale. Savannah Christian leads the series 22-14, but Calvary Day has won three of the past four meetings. Savannah Christian rushed for 314 yards, including 124 by A.J. Davis, in a 41-7 victory over Hebron Christian last week. QB Jordan Grant was 4-of-4 passing for 112 yards and two TDs. Calvary Day gets about 78 percent of its offense from the running game, but freshman QB Thomas Carver passed for a career-high 161 yards against Savannah Christian two weeks ago.

*No. 10 Darlington (8-3) at No. 6 Landmark Christian (9-1):Darlington’s offense averages 308 yards per game but was held to 419 total in its past two games, including a 20-6 first-round victory over Walker. Tijai Whatley (150-971-12) and Elijah McKoy (112-812-13) lead a running game that averages 221 yards. Landmark Christian was 9-0 until losing to Eagle’s Landing Christian 49-0 in the regular-season finale. The War Eagles are led by RB/DB Lofton Tidwell, who has rushed for 1,090 yards this season and more than 4,000 yards in his career, and QB/DB Joey Blount, a Virginia commitment.

*Mount Pisgah Christian (6-4) at No. 2 Prince Avenue Christian (10-0): Mount Pisgah has won at least one playoff game three times in four seasons. Last week, QB Jacob Cendoya passed for 370 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 75 yards in a 35-26 victory over Athens Christian. Kai Williams had six catches for 181 yards and scored four TDs. Prince Avenue has won 26 consecutive regular-season games and is seeking its sixth straight quarterfinal appearance. The Wolverines are as balanced as any team in the state (159.9 rushing, 156.5 passing). Greg Roland has passed for 1,550 yards, and Thomas Huff has rushed for 706.

*Athens Academy (9-2) at No. 8 Mount Paran Christian (9-1): Athens Academy beat Savannah Country Day 37-21 last week for its first playoff victory since 2012. The Spartans trailed 21-17 but scored three fourth-quarter touchdowns to pull away. Payton Bowles (861 yards rushing for the season) scored on a 71-yard reception and runs of 2 and 10 yards. Mount Paran, a state champion in 2014 and quarterfinalist last year, has won eight consecutive games since a 14-7 loss to Fellowship Christian. Jack Allen has rushed for 845 yards, including 83 and a touchdown in a 24-22 victory over Darlington in the regular-season finale. Athens Academy leads the series 3-0, but the teams haven’t met since 2010.

*George Walton Academy (8-3) at No. 3 Fellowship Christian (10-0):George Walton reached the semifinals in 2012 but did not return to the playoffs until this season. Running backs Ty Buice and James Wesley-Martin have been dealing with injuries but returned for the Bulldogs’ 38-14 win over Mount Vernon last week. Buice scored two TDs, and Wesley-Martin rushed for 66 yards. Fellowship Christian is in the playoffs for the first time since its 2007 team went 11-2. The Paladins average 275 yards rushing and are led by Andrew Johnson (137-943-12) and Andrew Minkert (117-746-9). QB Jack Hardin has passed for 1,119 yards, rushed for 387 and had a hand in 24 touchdowns.

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