How the new top-10 teams fared in Week 3

North Cobb and Buford line up on the line of scrimmage during their football game Friday night, September 1, 2023. (Jamie Spaar for the Atlanta Journal Constitution)

Credit: Jamie Spaar

Combined ShapeCaption
North Cobb and Buford line up on the line of scrimmage during their football game Friday night, September 1, 2023. (Jamie Spaar for the Atlanta Journal Constitution)

Credit: Jamie Spaar

Class 7A

1. (1) Buford (3-0)

Last week: Beat North Cobb 45-28. Justin Baker’s 4-yard run with 5:30 left in the first half gave Buford the lead for good at 24-21. Baker rushed for 88 yards and two touchdowns. Dylan Raiola was 12-of-15 passing for 294 yards and three touchdowns. Jordan Allen had six receptions for 121 yards. Eddrick Houston had two tackles for losses and blocked a kick. Next: Sept. 15 vs. Carver-Atlanta (1-1)

2. (2) Colquitt County (3-0)

Last week: Beat Tift County 40-2. Neko Fann was 15-of-24 passing for 269 yards and five touchdowns and threw the 71st TD pass of his career, a school record. Zay Williams had 110 yards receiving, and Ny Carr had 88. Next: Friday vs. Lee County (3-0)

3. (3) Mill Creek (3-0)

Last week: Beat Archer 42-7. Shane Throgmartin was 26-of-29 passing for 274 yards and four touchdowns. Trajen Greco had eight receptions for 101 yards and two touchdowns. Mill Creek led 35-7 at halftime. Next: Sept. 15 vs. Cedar Grove (1-2)

4. (4) Walton (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Pope (0-2)

5. (5) Carrollton (2-1)

Last week: Beat Rome 33-13. Ju Ju Lewis was 17-of-24 passing for 179 yards and four touchdowns, three in the first 14 minutes, staking Carrollton to a 19-0 lead. Caleb Odom had seven receptions for 104 yards and two touchdowns. Kimauri Farmer rushed for 194 yards on 30 carries and had two short TD receptions. Christian Kelley had two sacks for 18 lost yards and forced a fumble. Next: Friday vs. Villa Rica (1-1)

6. (6) Parkview (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. North Gwinnett (2-1)

7. (7) Westlake (3-0)

Last week: Beat Cedar Grove 46-41. Westlake scored the winning touchdown on a 24-yard pass from Sean Smith to Travis Smith with 36 seconds left. Cedar Grove threw incomplete from the Westlake 9 on the game’s final play. Smith was 12-of-21 passing for 141 yards and three touchdowns. Tomir Bransford rushed for 117 yards and two touchdowns. Westlake lost to Cedar Grove 30-20 last season.Next: Friday vs. Southwest DeKalb (1-2)

8. (8) Milton (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Roswell (3-0)

9. (9) Norcross (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Archer (1-2)

10. (10) Grayson (2-1)

Last week: Beat Fort Dorchester, S.C., 41-0. J.D. Davis threw four TD passes, two each to John Cineas and Alex Sanchez, and scored two touchdowns. Fort Dorchester is the No. 7 team in South Carolina’s highest classification, per MaxPreps. Next: Friday at Spartanburg, S.C. (2-1)

Class 6A

1. (2) Gainesville (3-0)

Last week: Beat Coconut Creek, Fla., 30-22. Gavin Hall rushed for 180 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries and had 95 yards receiving and a touchdown on six catches. Baxter Wright was 15-of-22 passing for 159 yards and two touchdowns. Gainesville led 30-14 in the fourth quarter when Coconut Creek scored late on a fumble return. Gainesville is ranked No. 1 for the first time since 2013. Next: Friday at Clarke Central (2-0)

2. (1) Hughes (2-1)

Last week: Lost to Butler, N.C., 30-27. Air Noland was 16-of-28 passing for 196 yards and two touchdowns but was intercepted three times, once in the final minutes as Hughes had rallied from a 30-14 halftime deficit. Dorian Page rushed for 127 yards. Butler is North Carolina’s No. 13 team in all classes, according to MaxPreps. Next: Sept. 15 at New Manchester (1-2)

3. (3) Houston County (3-0)

Last week: Beat West Laurens 55-14. A.J. Hill was 11-of-12 passing for 170 yards and four touchdowns. Ricky Johnson had three receptions for 110 yards and two touchdowns, one an 80-yarder. Amir Thomas rushed for 121 yards on four carries. Next: Friday at Locust Grove (1-1)

4. (4) Lee County (3-0)

Last week: Beat Lithia Springs 59-12. Devin Collier returned the opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown, and Lee County led 46-2 at halftime. Lee held Lithia Springs to minus-42 yards rushing. Cory McDowell returned an interception for a touchdown. Next: Friday at Colquitt County (3-0)

5. (5) Roswell (3-0)

Last week: Beat Marietta 51-14. K.J. Smith passed for five touchdowns, a week after throwing for seven, and was 13-of-16 passing for 229 yards. Synkwan Smith had five receptions for 119 yards and two touchdowns and 268 all-purpose yards. Next: Friday vs. Milton (1-1)

6. (8) Thomas County Central (3-0)

Last week: Beat Bainbridge 45-14. Trey Benton rushed for 146 yards. Tywon Christopher returned an interception 43 yards for a touchdown. A blocked punt gave Thomas Central another touchdown. Next: Sept. 15 at Brooks County (0-2)

7. (6) Woodward Academy (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Marist (2-1)

8. (7) Rome (2-1)

Last week: Lost to Carrollton 33-13. Rome trailed 19-0 early in the second quarter and never got closer than 13 points from there against a Class 7A opponent. Reece Fountain was 29-of-44 passing for 337 yards. D.K. Daniel had 140 yards receiving, and Nic Hester had 144. Next: Friday vs. Pebblebrook (2-1)

9. (10) Marist (2-1)

Last week: Beat Savannah Christian 21-7. Marist held Savannah Christian to minus-1 yard rushing and scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns to break open a close game. Jackson Hughes rushed for 135 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries. Next: Friday vs. Woodward Academy (1-1)

10. (9) Northside-Warner Robins (2-1)

Last week: Lost to Warner Robins 39-35. Northside led 28-11 midway in the third quarter and 35-32 after Ricardo Jones’ 12-yard TD pass from Damion Dee but surrendered a touchdown in the final two minutes. Dee was 16-of-25 passing for 164 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 52 yards. Next: Sept. 15 vs. North Cobb (0-2)

Class 5A

1. (1) Ware County (3-0)

Last week: Beat Baldwin 48-20. Ware County led 38-6 at halftime. Luke Hooks was 13-of-19 passing for 161 yards and two touchdowns. Dae’jeaun Dennis rushed for 87 yards on 12 carries. Next: Friday at Benedictine (3-0)

2. (3) Warner Robins (1-1)

Last week: Beat Northside-Warner Robins 39-35. Jeremiah Jackson scored on an 8-yard run at the end of an 80-yard drive with 1:22 left in the highest-scoring game in series history. Warner Robins took its first lead at 32-28 with 8:37 left when Khaedric Edwards returned a blocked field goal 74 yards for a touchdown. Warner Robins transfer Judd Anderson, who is committed to Miami, was 14-of-22 passing for 175 yards and two touchdowns a week after throwing four TD passes for his former school, Jones County. It was Anderson’s second game against Northside in three weeks. Warner Robins has won seven straight against Northside. Next: Friday at Valdosta (2-1)

3. (2) Creekside (2-1)

Last week: Lost to Mater Dei, Cal., 62-0. Playing in southern California, Creekside got down 48-0 in the first half against the nation’s consensus No. 1-ranked team. Mater Dei’s Elijah Brown, who is committed to Stanford, threw seven TD passes. Creekside’s Roderick McCrary rushed for 110 yards. Next: Sept. 15 at Lithia Springs (0-3)

4. (4) Coffee (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Bolles, Fla. (0-2)

5. (5) Cartersville (3-0)

Last week: Beat Allatoona 37-0. Khristian Lando rushed for 95 yards and three touchdowns on 12 carries. Cartersville rushed for 316 yards and four touchdowns as a team. Next: Friday vs. Columbia (2-1).

6. (6) Jefferson (3-0)

Last week: Beat St. Pius 42-0. Gavin Markey was 10-of-14 passing for 174 yards and two touchdowns. Sammy Brown rushed for 86 yards on 13 carries. Rodney Hinton had four receptions for 98 yards. Next: Friday vs. Oconee County (1-2)

7. (8) Hiram (3-0)

Last week: Beat East Paulding 52-49. Kaden Hamilton returned a kickoff 98 yards for a touchdown with 50 seconds left, and Hiram blocked East Paulding’s potential tying field goal to clinch it. Just before Hamilton’s return, East Paulding took a 49-44 lead and failed on a two-point conversion. Da’Shaun Williams rushed for 168 yards and a touchdown on nine carries and had two receptions for 75 yards and a touchdown. Ryan Strickland was 16-of-20 passing for 260 yards and three touchdowns. Next: Saturday vs. Morrow (1-2)

8. (9) Calhoun (2-1)

Last week: Beat Creekview 28-14. Calhoun intercepted four passes, three by Makadan Griffin and one by Bryant Arnold. Caden Williams rushed for 103 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries. Trey Townsend was 14-of-34 passing for 255 yards and three touchdowns. Emaree Winston had six receptions for 124 yards and two touchdowns. Next: Friday at Cedartown (1-2)

9. (10) Clarke Central (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Gainesville (3-0)

10. (NR) Greater Atlanta Christian (3-0)

Last week: Beat Pace Academy 17-14. GAC kept Pace out of the end zone on four plays starting at the 2-yard line with four minutes left, then ran out the clock, after leading 17-0 midway in the third quarter. Jack Stanton was 18-of-31 passing for 209 yards and a touchdown. Xavier Daisy had seven receptions for 85 yards. Reid Voyles had 14 tackles. Next: Friday vs. Decatur (2-1)

Out: No. 7 Jones County (1-2)

Class 4A

1. (1) Benedictine (3-0)

Last week: Beat Westminster 27-14. Luke Kromenhoek was 10-of-22 passing for 131 yards, and his 1-yard run with 3:54 left upended what had been a tight game. Ack Edwards rushed for 84 yards. Jeremiah Thomas had two tackles for losses. Next: Friday vs. Ware County (3-0)

2. (2) North Oconee (2-0)

Last week: Beat South Forsyth 35-3. QB Max Wilson rushed for 129 yards and touchdowns on 15 carries and was 5-of-7 passing for 47 yards. Next: Sept. 15 at Madison County (2-0)

3. (3) Troup (3-0)

Last week: Beat Callaway 21-13. Taeo Todd rushed for 99 yards and a touchdown and passed for 85 yards and two touchdowns. His 34-yard TD pass to Tyreon Smith early in the fourth quarter gave Troup a 21-13 lead. Next: Sept. 15 at Whitewater (2-1)

4. (5) Perry (1-1)

Last week: Beat Jones County 54-21. Ahmad Gordon rushed for 177 yards and three touchdowns, and Corrion Daniels ran for 148 and two. Perry led 33-14 at halftime. Next: Friday vs. Veterans (2-0)

5. (6) Wayne County (2-0)

Last week: Game vs. Appling County postponed until Thursday. Next: Thursday at Appling County (1-1)

6. (4) Bainbridge (1-2)

Last week: Lost to Thomas County Central 45-14. Bainbridge trailed only 352-350 in total yards. Antavious Murphy scored on passes of 27 and 54 yards, the latter to get Bainbridge within 24-14 in the third quarter, but Central dominated from there. Keenan Phillips rushed for 139 yards. Next: Friday at Thomasville (1-2)

7. (7) Holy Innocents’ (3-0)

Last week: Beat Seckinger 46-6. James Savula scored his four touchdowns in the second quarter and rushed for 113 yards on 16 carries. Holy Innocents’ led 39-6 at halftime. Next: Friday vs. Lake Highland, Fla. (1-1)

8. (8) Burke County (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Evans (1-1)

9. (NR) Spalding (3-0)

Last week: Beat Fayette County 41-0. QB Curt Clark rushed for 168 yards and a touchdown on three carries and was 6-of-10 passing for 112 yards and a touchdown. Spalding led 41-0 at halftime. Next: Friday at Dutchtown (1-2)

10. (9) Baldwin (2-1)

Last week: Lost to Ware County 48-20. Baldwin trailed 38-6 at halftime against the defending Class 5A champions. Next: Friday vs. Washington County (1-1)

Out: No. 10 Stephenson (2-1)

Class 3A

1. (1) Cedar Grove (1-2)

Last week: Lost to Westlake 46-41. Cedar Grove had a first down at Westlake’s 4 with two seconds remaining but was penalized to the 9 and threw incomplete on the final play. Westlake, the No. 8 team in Class 7A, scored the winning touchdown on a pass with 36 seconds left. Cedar Grove’s Elliott Colson was 14-of-23 passing for 160 yards and a touchdown and rushed for 106 yards and two touchdowns. Boden Walker had 98 yards from scrimmage and three touchdowns on 21 touches. Devin Carter had seven receptions for 116 yards and a touchdown. Next: Friday vs. Collins Hill (1-1)

2. (2) Calvary Day (2-0)

Last week: Beat Eagle’s Landing Christian 64-6. Jake Merklinger was 16-of-22 passing for 233 yards and three touchdowns, two to Michael Smith. Next: Friday vs. Charlotte Christian, N.C. (3-0)

3. (3) Sandy Creek (3-0)

Last week: Beat Alexander 39-0. Dalen Penson passed for 130 yards and rushed for 108. Amari Latimer rushed for 130 yards. Next: Friday at East Coweta (3-0)

4. (4) Stephens County (3-0)

Last week: Beat Flowery Branch 32-7. Javin Gordon rushed for 187 yards and two touchdowns on 28 carries. Next: Friday vs. Dawson County (0-3)

5. (5) Savannah Christian (2-1)

Last week: Lost to Marist 21-7. Marist scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns to break a 7-7 tie. Blaise Thomas was 9-of-14 passing for 135 yards. Savannah Christian had minus-1 yard rushing. Next: Sept. 15 at Savannah Country Day (2-1)

6. (6) Carver-Atlanta (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Stephenson (2-1)

7. (7) Monroe Area (3-0)

Last week: Beat Eagle’s Landing 50-12. Darrion Manuel rushed for 183 yards on nine carries and had two catches for 81 yards. Dylan Hamby was 4-of-8 passing for 100 yards and a touchdown and rushed for 58 yards. Next: Friday vs. Prince Avenue Christian (3-0)

8. (8) Thomasville (1-2)

Last week: Lost to Cairo 24-3. Thomasville was within 10-3 until late in the third quarter, and Cairo scored on an interception return for the final margin. Next: Friday vs. Bainbridge (1-2)

9. (9) Carver-Columbus (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Northeast (1-1)

10. (NR) Mary Persons (2-1)

Last week: Beat Trinity Christian 23-20. Gavin Cabe kicked a 39-yard field goal as time expired to break the tie. Duke Watson rushed for 213 yards and two touchdowns on 30 carries. Mac Nelson threw a 73-yard TD pass to Ty Dumas. Next: Friday vs. Haralson County (0-2)

Out: No. 10 Dougherty (2-1)

Class 2A

1. (3) Thomson (2-1)

Last week: Beat Grovetown 38-0. Jahkiaus Jones was 7-of-10 passing for 120 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 47 yards. Thomson, the defending champion, is back to No. 1 despite a loss to Burke County. Class 2A has only two undefeated top-10 teams. Next: Sept. 15 vs. Laney (1-1)

2. (2) Appling County (1-1)

Last week: Game vs. Wayne County postponed until Thursday. Next: Thursday vs. Wayne County (2-0)

3. (4) Callaway (1-1)

Last week: Lost to Troup 21-13. Callaway got within 14-13 midway in the third quarter on Deshun Coleman’s 23-yard run but no closer. Callaway was held to 188 yards and committed an early turnover deep in the red zone. Next: Friday at Heard County (0-2)

4. (5) Pierce County (2-0)

Last week: Beat Metter 47-10. Caden McGatha was 9-of-12 passing for 65 yards and rushed for 94 yards. Next: Friday at Liberty County (0-2)

5. (NR) Northeast (1-1)

Last week: Beat Fitzgerald 27-20. Nick Woodford rushed for 226 yards and two touchdowns on 26 carries and threw a TD pass, and Northeast defeated a No. 1-ranked team for the first time. The winning touchdown came at the end of a 17-play, 65-yard drive in the fourth quarter. Next: Friday vs. Carver-Columbus (2-0)

6. (1) Fitzgerald (2-1)

Last week: Lost to Northeast 27-20. Fitzgerald got within 27-20 on Wilson Davis’ 46-yard TD pass to Calvin Tillman with 3:25 left, then recovered an onside kick but turned the ball over on downs on the next series. Fitzgerald is outside the top five in the rankings for the first time since 2019. Next: Friday at Madison County, Fla. (0-0)

7. (7) Fellowship Christian (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. St. Francis (1-1)

8. (6) Rockmart (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Dalton (2-0)

9. (8) Cook (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Clinch County (2-1)

10. (NR) Toombs County (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Jefferson County (0-2)

Out: No. 9 North Cobb Christian (2-1), No. 10 Athens Academy (1-2)

Class A Division I

1. (1) Prince Avenue Christian (3-0)

Last week: Beat Athens Academy 52-21. Aaron Philo was 24-of-31 passing for 304 yards and five touchdowns and scored a touchdown. Peyton Talmadge rushed for 97 yards and a touchdown and caught a 43-yard TD pass. Tyler Denny kicked a school-record 47-yard field goal. Next: Friday at Monroe Area (3-0)

2. (2) Swainsboro (3-0)

Last week: Beat Jeff Davis 32-0. QB Bryson Tarver rushed for 100 yards and three touchdowns on six carries. Jerrod Steward had eight solo tackles and seven assists. Next: Friday at Dodge County (1-2)

3. (3) Irwin County (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Turner County (2-1)

4. (4) Bleckley County (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Schley County (2-0)

5. (5) Trion (2-0)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday at Gordon Central (0-3)

6. (6) Brooks County (0-2)

Last week: Off. Next: Friday vs. Mitchell County (0-3)

7. (7) Dublin (2-0)

Last week: Beat Lamar County 33-28. Dublin took a 27-7 lead early in the second half on Demari Foster’s 3-yard run and held on. Dublin was outgained 374-202 but forced three turnovers to none, scoring on one fumble return for the game’s first points. Next: Friday at Emanuel County Institute (0-2)

8. (8) Rabun County (2-1)

Last week: Beat Adairsville 35-20. Willie Goodwin had six receptions for 260 yards and scored on catches of 70, 72 and 88 yards. Ty Truelove was 13-of-21 passing for 282 yards and three touchdowns. Reid Giles rushed for 66 yards and a touchdown, threw a 72-yard TD pass and caught a 5-yard TD pass. Next: Sept. 15 vs. Heard County (0-2)

9. (9) Elbert County (2-1)

Last week: Beat Harlem 21-20. Jacari Barnett’s 4-yard run with 36 seconds left and Brandon Horne’s extra point completed Elbert County’s comeback from a 20-0 deficit from late in the third quarter. Braydon Scarborough passed for 407 yards and a touchdown. Brady Dickerson had 129 receiving yards. D.K. WInn had 101. Next: Sept. 15 vs. Washington-Wilkes (1-1)

10. (10) Mount Vernon (3-0)

Last week: Beat Mount Paran Christian 44-6. Sam Nazarian was 9-of-10 passing for 243 yards and three touchdowns. Ethan Pajot had 100 yards receiving. Mount Vernon led 37-3 at halftime. Next: Sept. 15 at Tattnall Square (1-2)

Class A Division II

1. (1) Schley County (2-0)

Last week: Beat Early County 30-0. Jay Kanazawa was 13-of-24 passing for 172 yards and three touchdowns, two to Jalewis Solomon, who had six catches for 108 yards. Kanazawa also rushed for 60 yards. Next: Friday at Bleckley County (2-0)

2. (2) Manchester (2-0)

Last week: Beat Columbus 54-3. Quavion Cooper rushed for 132 yards and two touchdowns on 10 carries. Justus Terry had two sacks and caused a fumble. C.J. Favors had five tackles and broke up two passes. Next: Friday vs. Lamar County (1-2)

3. (4) Macon County (3-0)

Last week: Beat Dooly County 36-30. The Bulldogs avenged a 58-26 loss and moved to 3-0 after an 0-3 start last season. The Bulldogs have also avenged losses to Whitefield Academy and Clinch County. Next: Sept. 15 vs. Greenville (0-3)

4. (5) Bowdon (1-2)

Last week: Beat Bremen 42-16. Jordan Beasley rushed for 249 yards, and Kyler McGrinn rushed for 209. Dylan McGrinn had 13 tackles. Next: Friday vs. Tattnall Square (1-2)

5. (6) Aquinas (3-0)

Last week: Beat Savannah Country Day 19-17. Aquinas took a 19-7 lead midway in the third quarter on Jack Rhodes’ third TD reception, then sweated out Savannah Country Day’s missed a 42-yard field goal with three seconds left. Jim Franklin was 16-of-26 passing for 225 yards and three touchdowns, all to Rhodes, who had 11 catches for 198 yards. Next: Sept. 15 at Harlem (2-1)

6. (7) Clinch County (2-1)

Last week: Beat Miller County 28-0. Aaron Bryant rushed for 151 yards on 15 carries and was 4-of-10 passing for 52 yards. Jashaun Raymond rushed for 102 yards and two touchdowns on five carries. Next: Friday vs. Cook (1-1)

7. (3) Early County (2-1)

Last week: Lost to Schley County 30-0. Early County lost four fumbles in the game and got down 20-0 in the first half. Next: Friday at Terrell County (1-0)

8. (8) McIntosh County Academy (1-1)

Last week: Off. Next: Saturday vs. West Nassau, Fla. (1-0)

9. (9) Greene County (3-0)

Last week: Beat Hancock Central 43-6. Greene County had nine tackles for losses by halftime while taking a 43-6 lead. Steve Miller threw two TD passes to B.J. Mullen and scored another touchdown. Next: Friday at Wilkinson County (1-1)

10. (10) Jenkins County (3-0)

Last week: Beat East Laurens 48-20. Robtravious Coney rushed for 187 yards and two touchdowns on five carries and caught an 83-yard TD pass. Next: Friday vs. Cross Creek (1-0)

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