Mill Creek 41, Roswell 17
Roswell’s season ended Friday with the Hornets dropping their second-round matchup to No. 10-ranked Mill Creek at home. Mill Creek held a two-score lead at the half but used its rushing game to outscore the Hornets 17-7 in the final 24 minutes of play to deny Roswell a trip to the quarterfinals.
Roswell safety Doneiko Slaughter tied the game at 7-7 early with a fumble returned for a touchdown. Mill Creek added another score before a field goal from Caden Long put cut the deficit to 14-10.
The Hawks added four unanswered scores before Roswell’s only touchdown of the game, a pass from Ethan Roberts to John Copenhaver, came in the final minutes of play.
Roswell compiled an 8-3 record this season and captured its second straight Region 4-AAAAAAA championship. The Hornets compiled seven winning seasons during the decade.
Marietta 38, Milton 24
The 2018 Class 7A state champs will not be defending their title this year with Milton falling to Marietta in a battle of top-10 ranked teams.
The Blue Devils opened a 21-0 lead in the first half, and the Eagles could not erase the deficit.
Marietta running back Kimana Vidal scored had three touchdowns in the opening 16 minutes of play to give the Blue Devils a sizeable lead. Milton got on the scoreboard just before the half with quarterback Devin Farrell connecting with Jack Nickel for a 28-yard touchdown.
Jason Aussin added a field goal for the Eagles early in the third quarter, but Vidal added another score three minutes later to push Marietta’s lead to 28-10. Early in the fourth, Vidal notched his fifth touchdown of the game, a 3-yard run.
Jordan McDonald scored two rushing touchdowns in the final five minutes of play for Milton, but it was not enough to overcome the deficit.
Milton went 8-4 this season and won its second straight Region 5 championship, the first back-to-back region titles in program history. The Eagles also made history by becoming the first Georgia high school football team to play a game in California.
McEachern 42, North Forsyth 14
North Forsyth played in a second round game for the first time in 14 years Friday night, but the Raiders fell short of advancing with a 42-14 loss to No. 2 ranked McEachern (11-0).
The Indians jumped out to a 20-0 lead in the first half with two rushing scores and a pick-six.
North’s defense put the Raiders on the scoreboard midway through the second period with an interception by Miles Hartsfield returned for a touchdown, but McEachern responded on their ensuing drive with another scoring run.
McEachern added two touchdowns in the second half before North’s only offensive touchdown, a Brady Meitz run, came with under two minutes remaining.
North Forsyth went 7-5 overall this season, the Raiders’ first winning season since 2013. North also won its first playoff game since 2005 this year.
Valdosta 28, Johns Creek 24
Johns Creek earned its first playoff win in program history this season, but the Gladiators will still be looking for postseason win No. 2 after taking a heartbreaking, 28-24 loss to Valdosta Friday at home in a battle of top-10 ranked teams.
The dramatic finish was set up by Gladiators’ kicker Caleb Adegboyega converting a 38-yard field goal under two minutes remaining to give Johns Creek a 24-21 lead.
Valdosta moved the ball to midfield on its ensuing possession, and with under a minute remaining, a quick slant pass found a gap in the Gladiators’ defense, and a Wildcats receiver won a footrace to the endzone.
Trailing 28-24 with under a minute to go, Johns Creek drove inside Valdosta territory. With three seconds left, quarterback Ben Whitlock threw a pass to the end zone looking for the game-clinching score. The pass fell incomplete, but a pass interference call against Valdosta gave the Gladiators one more shot on an untimed down on the Wildcats’ 16-yard line.
On the do-or-die play, Whitlock was intercepted in the corner of the end zone, handing the Gladiators a crushing loss.
Whitlock was 32-51 passing for 342 yards with two touchdowns. Yong Min Lee led the Gladiators with 101 yards receiving, and Justin Campbell hauled in two touchdown passes.
The Gladiators compiled a 10-2 overall record this season and won their second straight Region 7-AAAAAA title.
Blessed Trinity 36, Baldwin 3
Blessed Trinity won its 12th straight playoff game Friday and advanced to the quarterfinals by taking down No. 4 seed Baldwin (5-7) at home. After a close first half, the Titans ran away with the contest.
BT’s Elijah Green scored the only touchdown of the first half to give the Titans a 9-3 lead at the break.
Green found the end zone again in the third with a 75-yard scamper to extend the margin to 15-3. The Titans’ defense added points soon after with by recovering a Baldwin fumble in the end zone.
Moments later, BT’s David Coltrane returned an interception for a touchdown to give the Titans three scores in one minute of play.
A touchdown rush from Justice Haynes late in the quarter iced the game.
The Titans (11-1) will host West Laurens (11-1) in the quarterfinals Friday. The game will serve as the first matchup between the programs.
Fellowship Christian 14, North Cobb Christian 0
Fellowship Christian remained undefeated and advanced to the quarterfinals with a 14-0 win over No. 11 seed North Cobb Christian Friday night in Roswell. The win puts the Paladins (11-0) in the third round for the third time in four years.
Though Fellowship was held well short of its 46 points per game average, two touchdowns proved enough to propel the win with the Paladins’ defense recording its third shutout of the year.
After a scoreless first half, Fellowship’s Jayven Hall rushed into the end zone from 6 yards out midway through the third. Just 10 seconds into the fourth quarter, quarterback Eli Hildebrandt extended Fellowship’s lead to 14-0 with a 1-yard touchdown run.
The Paladins defense sealed the win by continuing to stymie North Cobb Christian’s offense, which entered the game averaging 24 points a contest.
The Paladins (11-0) will host No. 12 seed Hebron Christian (8-4) in the quarterfinals.
St. Francis vs. Holy Innocents’ (Saturday)
St. Francis will take on No. 2 seed Holy Innocents’ Saturday, Nov. 23 at 4:30 p.m. at Riverwood High School. The No. 18 seed Knights are in the second round of the playoffs for the first time in program history.