High School Sports

Friday’s Middle Georgia GHSA semifinal games

CLASS AAAAA

NO. 2 ALLATOONA (13-0) VS. NO. 5 NORTHSIDE (12-1)

Time/location: 7:30 p.m./Mercer University Stadium.

Series record: First meeting.

Who’s next: Mays or Stockbridge.

Key Buccaneeners: QB Connor Larson, Sr.; RB Russell Halimon, Jr.; WR Zach Nichols, Sr.; RB Joshua Bettistea, Sr.; LB Will Kemp, Sr.; DE Allen Johnson, Jr.

Key Eagles: G Tyler Dunn, Sr.; DL Darius Richardson, Jr.; RB Willie Jordan, Sr.; K/P Justin Alonso, Jr.; QB Tobias Oliver, Soph.

When Allatoona has the ball: The Bucs run toss sweeps, but not wide and race-to-the edge. They’re fundamentally sound up front and Northside can’t afford to get locked up on blocks. The linebackers and secondary have to keep an eye on Bettistea, and avoid getting lulled into thinking the Bucs won’t take shots downfield.

When Northside has the ball: Oliver has grown remarkably this season, and here’s another huge stage. The Bucs will likely tweak some things on defense against the veer to disrupt Oliver’s timing, and Northside’s depth at running back will be big. Don’t be surprised if some big plays come by air for the Eagles.

CLASS AAA

NO. 3 BLESSED TRINITY (13-0) AT NO. 1 WASHINGTON COUNTY (13-0)

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Series record: Washington County leads 1-0.

Last meeting: Washington County won 46-17 in 2013 Class AAA quarterfinals.

Who’s next: Calhoun or Westminster-Atlanta.

Key Titans: QB Conor Davis, Jr.; RB Milton Shelton, Jr.; TE/OLB Pat Jasinski, Sr.

Key Golden Hawks: QB/DB AJ Gray, Sr.; WR/DE Logan Hunt, Sr.; RB/LB Will Coneway, Sr.

Scouting report: In its 14th year of varsity competition and fourth under former Roswell head coach Tim McFarlin, Blessed Trinity has reached the 10-win mark for the first time and is also making its first appearance in the semifinals. Washington County has a 17-game home winning streak going, dating back to a 28-14 loss to Thomson on Oct. 26, 2012.

CLASS AA

NO. 1 GREATER ATLANTA CHRISTIAN (13-0) AT NO. 4 FITZGERALD (12-1)

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Series record: First meeting.

Who’s next: Brooks County/Benedictine.

Key Spartans: RB/CB Micah Abernathy, Sr.; QB Davis Mills, Soph.; WR/CB Darius Slayton, Sr.

Key Purple Hurricane: QB/FS Gerald Morgan, Sr.; FB JD King, Soph.; WB/DB Trey Graham, Sr.

Scouting report: Greater Atlanta Christian is facing its third Middle Georgia opponent in a row after defeating Lamar County 48-20 in the second round and Vidalia 34-22 in the quarterfinals. Fitzgerald has won 10 or more games 10 times in the past 11 years and is in the semifinals for the first time since back-to-back appearances in 2008 and 2009.

CLASS A

NO. 6 HAWKINSVILLE (11-1) AT NO. 2 MARION COUNTY (12-0)

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Series record: Marion County leads 5-1.

Last meeting: Marion County won 13-6 on Oct. 17.

Who’s next: Commerce or Irwin County.

Key Red Devils: LB Warren Singletary, Sr.; QB Dakota Sloan, Sr.; S Malik Holliman, Sr.

Key Eagles: QB/SS Dustin Eckert, Sr.; RB Johnny Royal, Sr.; ATH Lorenzo Smothers, Jr.

Scouting report: These teams faced off in GHSA Region 4-A play in October, with Marion County scoring twice in the second half to claim a defensive struggle. Marion County, which is in its ninth year of varsity play following the breakup of Tri-County, was last year’s Class A public school champion.

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