It was an exciting night of football under the brisk November sky, as Rabun, Jefferson, Union, Dawson, and Commerce all took to the gridiron for the opening round of the state playoffs. It was perfect, as all 5 of them advanced to the Sweet 16.
#1 Rabun County 38, #4 BEST Academy 0
The Wildcats shut down the Eagles, not allowing BEST inside the red zone all night in a 38-0 beatdown. Gunner Stockton threw 2 touchdowns (both to Braxton Hicks) and ran for 2 more, while Cory Keller added another for good measure.
#1 Jefferson 49, #4 Sonoraville 17
Jefferson had no problems with Sonoraville after the first quarter, when leading 7-6. The Dragons went up 20-6 at the break, getting a big boost on a 76-yard Kade McNally TD. Jordan Perry stretched it to 27-17 in the 3rd, and Jefferson poured it on to advance to the second round.
#2 Union County 19, #3 South Atlanta 15
It wasn’t easy, but Union County made school history with its first-ever playoff win and first-ever 10-win season. After trailing 7-0 in the 2nd, Pierson Allison hooked up with a 15-yd TD pass to Sawyer Drake to tie the game. A safety on a Noah Underwood blocked punt shortly after made it 9-7 Union County. Just before the break, Mason McCombs banged home a 44-yard field goal to give the Panthers a 12-7 edge. South Atlanta opened the 3rd with a long drive, capped by a TD run and 2-point conversion to go up 15-12, which held into the 4th. Jonah Daniel notched a 12-yard TD to open the quarter and give Union the 19-15 lead, of which they held on by a thread to claim the first playoff win.
#3 Dawson County 27, #2 Westminster 3
The Tigers walked off victorious with a dominant win over Westminster. It was a big upset win. Caleb Bonesteel got the scoring started with a field goal, and an Isaiah Grindle TD run made it 10-3 Dawson at the break. Bonesteel continued his incredible season with a 38-yard field goal in the 3rd before a Shawn Thomas 25-yard TD run to put the Tigers out front, 20-3 in the 4th. Thomas put the bow on the box with a 7-yd TD.
#10 Commerce 23, #23 Trion 6
Commerce made quick work out of Trion, making it 8-for-8 all time against the opponent. Sam Roach got the first TD after an earlier field goal by the Tigers. Commerce led 9-6 at the break. Daniel Wilson found the end zone to go up 16-6, and Roach added the final dagger for the 23-6 win.
#2 Buford 43, #3 Decatur 6
#2 North Hall 24, #3 Lovett 21
#2 Allatoona 49, #3 Gainesville 7
#2 Sandy Creek 42, #3 Denmark 7
#1 Cartersville 14, #4 Flowery Branch 6