Blessed Trinity coach Tim McFarlin (center) celebrates with staff and players after their 23-9 win against Cartersville in the Class AAAA State Championship at Mercedes-Benz Stadium Wednesday, December 12, 2018, in Atlanta. (JASON GETZ/SPECIAL TO THE AJC)

Four Questions with Blessed Trinity head coach Tim McFarlin

Today's interviewee is Blessed Trinity coach Tim McFarlin, whose team defeated Marist in three overtimes last week to win the Region 7-AAAA championship. The region title was the Titans' sixth in seven seasons and was won with clutch region victories over Denmark (20-19), Flowery Branch (20-17) and Marist (33-30).

Tim McFarlin, Blessed Trinity head coach 

1. Describe the Marist game, and what do you feel won it for you? "The Marist game was one of the most intense games I've been a part of in my coaching years. And, I think the difference in the game for both teams was the kicking game, which oftentimes goes unnoticed until you get into one of these situations. Both kickers were outstanding. In a game like this, it usually comes down to one or two plays, and that was the case Friday night. Marist ran a great passing route earlier in the game for a touchdown and came back to it in overtime. Our cornerback, Quinton Reese, made a nice break on the route and was able to pick it off to seal the win." 

2. This is Blessed Trinity's sixth region title in seven seasons. How would you rank this one? "Winning the region this year was very special for our program, especially this senior class which has been somewhat overshadowed by the previous group of seniors. Couple that with the fact that our region is so strong this year, I'm not sure anyone really expected us to come out of the region as the 1 seed. Looking back at the season and our scores, we never had the luxury to look down the road. Every game this year was a battle, and that may have been the difference for us last Friday." 

3. You've won three region games by three points or fewer. You won two region games last season by three or fewer. Why do you think your team has been able to win so many close ones? Any coaching tips on how to handle the tight games? "I think winning close games is more a credit to the character of your players more so than coaching. Committed players tend to overcome adversity and seem to play through pressure without really thinking about it. Winning close this year is a credit to them." 

4. How to do you see Class AAAA playing out? Is there a team that you view as standing above the others? "Class AAAA football is extremely good and balanced this year. There are great teams and coaching staffs all over the state, and the playoffs will be very competitive, beginning week one. I think it's wide open, and there are no fewer than 10 teams who can get hot at the right time and win it all. We're just glad to be a part of it." 

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