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PREP FOOTBALL ROUNDUP: SGA rolls in playoff opener; Pelham sneaks into postseason

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

DAMASCUS -- Southwest Georgia Academy hit the ground running in the first round of the GISA Class AA playoffs.

The Warriors totaled 489 yards rushing and 555 total yards in a blowout victory, 40-10, against Strong Rock Christian to advance to play at No. 1 seed Bulloch Academy out of Statesboro next week.

"You just want to come out and execute and we really did," SGA coach David Bell said. "We controlled the line of scrimmage all night. You do that, you win. You rush for 400 something yards, you'll win."

Nile Knapp led the way with 236 yards on 10 carries with three touchdowns. Taylor Tabb had seven rushes for 49 yards and Drew Tabb added seven rushes for 86 yards and two touchdowns.

SGA jumped out to a 28-3 lead at halftime and cruised from there. The Warriors defense held Strong Rock to 181 total yards, much of which came against second stringers.

"We played really well on defense," Bell said. "We did a really good job against their option."

PELHAM BEATS R-C, HEADS TO PLAYOFFS FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 2002:

Pelham scored two touchdowns before halftime, then relied on its defense to hold off Randolph-Clay the rest of the way for a 14-13 win Friday in the Region 1-A play-in game.

The Hornets will now travel to Greenville next week for their first playoff appearance since the 2003 season.

Greenville is coached by Jeremy Williams, a man Pelham coach Jim Morrell calls "one of my best friends in the whole world."

"We're gonna meet (today), swap film and I'll make him buy me supper," laughed Morrell, who met Williams when the two coached together at Harris County years ago. "He already texted me and we're both excited about it. And I'm excited for our kids."

D.T. Almond scored both of Pelham's TDs in the win.

BAINBRIDGE FALLS, STILL MAKES PLAYOFFS:

The Region 1-AAAA champion Thomas County Central High School Yellow Jackets defeated the Bainbridge High School Bearcats, 13-3, on Friday night at Centennial Field in the final Region and regular season game for both teams.

Despite the setback, the Bearcats finished third in the Region and will play the Region 4AAAA runner-up North Clayton High School Eagles next Friday night in Atlanta.

They Bearcats finish the regular season 6-4 overall and 4-4 in Region 1AAAA play.

The Yellow Jackets led, 6-0, at halftime on a pair of field goals and a missed shot by Keenan Adams.

With 5:42 left in the third quarter, Adams kicked a 46-yard field goal to culminate a five-play, 47-yard drive ans score the Bearcats' only points as TCC tacked on a TD by Lavoyd Reddick from 13 yards out for a touchdown with 6:46 left in the game to culminate a five-play, 47-yard drive. Bell's extra point kick made it 13-3 and seal the win.

COOK BEATS EARLY AS BOBCATS MISS THE PLAYOFFS:

One season after going 1-9, the Bobcats have a lot to be proud of, finishing 5-5 on the season after a 27-14 loss to Cook on Friday night.

Cook led, 14-0, at the half, but Early fought back when T.J, Allen scored and then Quayven LeVatte scored on a 14-yard run to cut the lead to 21-14.

But when Allen tossed a late interception as the Bobcats drove, looking for the tie or the win, Cook held on and sealed up the win.

"We wanted to get to the playoffs for the 10th straight year, and in South Georgia, that is pretty special," Cook head coach Mac Thompson said.

The Hornets honored Roy White before the game, retiring his No. 21 jersey on Senior Night. White passed away during spring practice earlier this year.

"You cannot replace a kid like Roy," Thompson said. "If he was here, we would be a better team than what we are. He brought a lot of character to this team, but our guys will bounce back. It's part of life, and you learn about it in football."