Friday recap: No. 1 Athens Academy; No. 2 Crisp County lose

(Jason Getz/For the AJC)
(Jason Getz/For the AJC)

Credit: Jason Getz

Credit: Jason Getz

Ware County and Cedar Grove fought off worthy challenges to their No. 1 rankings Friday night by beating top-10 opponents, but Athens Academy failed to survive an avalanche of second-half points against cross-county rival Prince Avenue Christian.

After a scoreless first half, No. 2 Prince Avenue Christian rolled to a 41-7 victory over the No. 1 team in Class 1A Private. Prince Avenue Christian had lost four consecutive in the series but now stands poised to ascend to a No. 1 ranking for the first time since 2015. Prince Avenue Christian is 6-1, its only loss to Rabun County of Class 2A.

Ware County, the No. 1 team in 5A, beat No. 6 Coffee 24-14. Ware (6-0) became the eighth team in GHSA history to beat five ranked opponents in the regular season. Only two teams (2016 Valdosta and 2018 Colquitt County) have beaten more, according to the Georgia High School Football Historians Association.

Also in 5A, No. 2 Blessed Trinity beat No. 5 Calhoun 35-21. Blessed Trinity, the champion of Class 4A the past three seasons, has played only three games because of COVID-19 protocol, but won them all.

Cedar Grove, No. 1 and defending champion in 3A, beat No. 5 Greater Atlanta Christian 33-6 to take first place in Region 5. Cedar Grove (4-0) has won 26 consecutive region games. GAC fell to 5-1.

Also in 3A, No. 4 Peach County – stopping a late two-point conversion attempt – beat No. 2 Crisp County 14-13 in Region 2. It was Crisp County’s first region loss in 17 games and five years. Peach County has won 20 consecutive region games, also dating to 2015. Reclassification put the two powerhouses in the same Region 2 this season.

In Class 7A, two top-10 teams won in overtime. No. 7 Roswell defeated No. 6 Cherokee 35-28 in a game between unbeaten teams from Region 5. No. 5 Norcross edged Mill Creek 23-20 in a non-region game.

Wayne County was the only team outside the top 10 to beat a ranked team. The Yellow Jackets defeated No. 10 Veterans of Class 5A in a Region 1 game. That region also includes No. 1 Ware, No. 3 Warner Robins and No. 6 Coffee, so Veterans has its work cut out to get back in the playoff race.

No. 2 Fitzgerald of Class 2A beat No. 9 Early 42-7 in a Region 1 game, and Dublin, the 2019 champion in 2A and ranked No. 5 in 1A Public, fended off No. 9 Wilcox County 35-28 in a game between the lone top-10 teams from Region 4.

Callaway, the No. 1 team in 2A, postponed its game with No. 5 Haralson County until Tuesday because of COVID-19 concerns within the school. Both teams are undefeated.

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