Final week of the season is here and the stakes are still high for most teams around the area — with playoff hopes or playoff positioning still to be determined in most every game.
Centennial, Chattahoochee and Northview all are in “win and you’re in” situations, Pisgah can lock up their first playoff berth in state history with a win, and Milton, Johns Creek, Alpharetta and BT all have important games for seeding purposes.
Last week before the playoffs, so let’s tee it up for one last full week. Games, picks and playoff scenarios are below.
Centennial (3-6, 3-3) vs. Chattahoochee (6-3, 4-2)
A battle for the fourth and final playoff spot in 6AAAAAA and it will be played out in front of a televised audience on Thursday Night — what a way to end the season huh?
Centennial will be looking to repeat their late push to the postseason last year while Hooch is trying to advance to state for a third straight season.
Both teams have played well of late, so look for this one to be a good one.
My take – Close early, but the Cougars pull away late
Milton (6-3, 4-2) vs. Woodstock (3-6, 3-3)
Milton hosts Woodstock with a chance to lock up the No. 3 seed in 5AAAAAA, a loss drops the Eagles to the fourth slot in the region. Woodstock also has a lot to play for; the Wolverines will take the No. 3 seed with a win and are likely out of the playoffs with a loss, so look for this one to be hotly contested.
My take — Milton wins
Roswell (2-7, 1-5) vs. Walton (7-2, 5-1)
Old rivalry here and one that is more winnable for Roswell than it looks on the surface. The Hornets played Lassiter as tough as anyone has all season last week (28-14 loss) and will catch Walton on a perfect week. QB Parker McLeod and RB Tyren Jones (Both Alabama commits) are hurt and a host of other Raiders are dinged up.
With Walton having little to play for in terms of playoff positioning (They are the 2 seed either way) look for the Raiders to rest a number of players and for the Hornets to provide a scare.
My take – Close, close, close but I’ll take Walton by a point
Johns Creek (8-1, 5-1) vs. Alpharetta (6-3, 5-1)
If West Forsyth slips up and loses to Lambert, this one decides the region champion. Otherwise it determines the 2 and 3 seeds from 6AAAAAA.
Both teams are playing well of late, with Johns Creek’s defense holding things together and Alpharetta’s offense pumping out points in their five straight wins.
My take – Raiders edge Glads late
Northview (3-6) at Pope (6-3)
A bona fide play-in game to the state playoffs. Pope is the No. 2 seed from their sub region and will host third-seeded Northview. The Titans have been an offensive machine of late — averaging nearly 50 points in sub region play — while Pope has struggled to light the lamp, scoring 50 total points in their four sub region games.
So which will win out? Offense or defense? Pope rallied from a 14-10 first-half deficit to beat Northview earlier in the season so look for this to be a good one again.
My take — Upset alert, Northview finds a way and advances to state
Cambridge (1-8) at Osborne (1-8)
The fifth place game in 7AAAAA pits a rematch for Cambridge against Osborne — a team they played tough for four quarters in September before losing 20-0.
My take — Bears have improved, but Cardinals win by a TD
Blessed Trinity (7-2, 4-1) vs. Cedar Grove (6-3, 4-1)
Blessed Trinity’s region championship hopes were pretty much wiped out last week with a loss to St. Pius, but the Titans can still lock up home field in Round 1 by beating Cedar Grove. A win against Cedar Grove and a St. Pius loss to Decatur would give BT a region title — but that isn’t likely. A loss drops BT to the third seed in the region and pits them against powerhouse Buford in the first round of the state playoffs.
My take — Titans by a FG
FCS (1-8) vs. Southwest Atl Christian (0-9)
In a battle of last place teams, FCS will host SWAC, a struggling program that has struggled to be competitive in any game this season. This game was originally scheduled to be played in Atlanta, but was switched to Fellowship Christian’s home field early in the week.
My take — Paladins finish on a winning note
King’s Ridge (4-5) at Christian Heritage (5-4)
A battle of fifth place teams in 6A. Without much shot of the state playoffs, King’s Ridge will be playing for pride and a chance to get their record back to .500 for a third straight season
My take — Close game, but the Tigers lose by a TD
Mount Pisgah (6-3) at Darlington (6-3)
In what is likely the biggest game in Mount Pisgah’s football history, the Patriots will travel to Rome to take on perennial state power Darlington in a sub region playoff game (Pisgah is the No. 3 seed and Darlington the No. 2 from their respective sub regions).
Currently ranked No. 15 in the Class-A Private school rankings, a win over Darlington would lock Pisgah into the state playoff picture and likely vault them up a few spots in the rankings — affording them a shot at a more favorable playoff matchup in Round 1.
A loss to Darlington leaves things up in the air and Pisgah will have to play the waiting game until the final power rankings come out next week. The good news is that since Darlington is a formidable opponent — ranked No. 7 in the same rankings — a loss may not hurt Pisgah enough to drop them two spots in the polls.
My take — Darlington wins, but Patriots still make playoffs