Class 7A blog: Walton knocks out Colquitt; few opening upsets

(Casey Sykes for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Credit: Casey Sykes

Combined ShapeCaption
(Casey Sykes for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Credit: Casey Sykes

The Class 7A first round went so routinely Friday night that a computer went 13-2-1 in its predictions, and a smart and lucky human might’ve gotten them all.

Walton beat Colquitt County 41-17, and Norcross beat Cherokee 28-21, both winning as four-point underdogs, per the Maxwell Ratings’ projections. North Gwinnett beat South Forsyth 29-15 in a game picked as a tossup . The rest went as expected.

The best games were McEachern beating South Gwinnett 34-28 in double overtime and Pebblebrook defeating Parkview 44-41. Pebblebrook’s victory was the program’s first playoff win since 2006.

The Walton-Colquitt County was the most significant matchup, as each was ranked. No. 9 Walton ended No. 6 Colquitt’s streak of 12 first-round victories. It was Walton’s fifth straight first-round victory, but the most impressive over that stretch. Colquitt had been 18-1 in home playoff games this century.

Colquitt, of course, is from South Georgia’s Region 1. Walton had also beaten Region 1′s champion, Lowndes, to start the season but finished third in its own Region 3, which suggests South Georgia making its usual deep run.

Lowndes did win Friday, beating Harrison 45-35.

Here are the round-of-16 matchups:

Marietta at Milton

Mill Creek at McEachern

Walton at Archer

North Gwinnett at Brookwood

Grayson at Denmark

Roswell at North Cobb

Pebblebrook at Collins Hill

Norcross at Lowndes