Prep Zone

Atlanta high school sports news from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

One top seed goes down in the quarterfinals

We’re down to the final four on both the public and private sides. The semifinal matchups on the private side are No. 1 Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy vs. No. 5 Prince Avenue and No. 2 Athens Academy vs. No. 3 Mount Paran Christian, on the public its No. 5 Clinch County vs. No. 8 Mt. Zion-Carroll and No. 2 Irwin County vs. No. 3 Emanuel County Institute.

Mt. Zion-Carroll pulled the upset of the night, knocking out top-seeded Manchester. Here’s a look at what happened in the quarter finals.


Upper Left Bracket

No. 1 Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy 55, No. 9 Calvary Day 0

With a stifling defensive effort and a balanced run game, Eagle’s Landing Christian (12-0) coasted to another big victory over the visiting Calvary Day Cavaliers (10-3). Charger quarterback Brayden Rush was 5-of-11 for 102 yards and one touchdown (a 51-yard pass to Sean Queen) and ran for another 50 yards on nine carries, including a 3-yard score. Josh Mays found the end zone three times (on runs of 10, 5 and 3 yards), and Justin Menard (5 carries, 67 yards), Nate McCollum (6 for 65) and Keaton Mitchell (6 for 45) each scored rushing touchdowns as well. Of the Chargers’ 426 total yards, 324 were on the ground.

Lower Left Bracket

No. 5 Prince Avenue Christian 31, No. 13 Darlington 18

Christian Parrish rushed for touchdowns of 9 and 10 yards out of the wildcat formation to put host Prince Avenue Christian (11-1) up 14-0 with 10 minutes left in the second quarter. Darlington (8-5) responded with a 4-yard touchdown run, but Parrish blocked the point after to keep the lead at 14-6. James DeLaurier added a Wolverines field goal before the half and then Grant Roland broke the game open with a 50-yard touchdown pass to Parrish with 3:55 left in the third quarter to push the lead to 24-6. Sam Wessinger added a Wolverines touchdown less than a minute into the final frame to put PACS up 31-6. The deficit remained 25 points until Darlington was able to shrink it to 13 with two touchdowns and a successful onside kick within the final 53 seconds of regulation.

Left Bracket Semifinal:  No. 5 Prince Avenue Christian at No. 1 ELCA

Upper Right Bracket

No. 2 Athens Academy 38, No. 10 Savannah Country Day 14

Host Athens Academy (12-0) kept its perfect season alive with a four-touchdown performance from running back Len’Neth Whitehead. The 6-foot-2, 228-pound sophomore powered in a 2-yard touchdown with 7:11 left in the first quarter and Drew Byus kicked a 31-yard field goal to make it a 10-0 Spartans lead at the end of the frame. Savannah Country Day (10-3) completed a 73-yard touchdown pass to open the second quarter, but Athens Academy’s Payton Bowles returned the ensuing kickoff 85 yards to set up Whitehead for an 8-yard touchdown to quickly push the lead back to 10 points (17-10). Freshman Deion Colzie intercepted Savannah Country Day with enough time left before the half for Henry Trapnell to add a 2-yard rushing score to increase the lead to 24-7. Two second-half touchdown runs by Whitehead put him over the 200-yard rushing mark and made it a 38-7 game before Savannah Country Day was able to add a final score with just 2:54 left.

Lower Right Bracket

No. 3 Mount Paran Christian 14, No. 6 Stratford Academy 7

A quick score in the first quarter put Stratford Academy (10-2) up 7-0. Stratford managed to maintain its lead throughout the majority of the game until the Mt. Paran (11-1) offense finally came to life. The Eagles scored a touchdown early in the fourth quarter to tie the game. Stratford was unable to stop the rolling offense, and allowed Mt. Paran to find the end zone a second time to put the game away. The Mt. Paran offense totaled 165 yards on 37 carries, with Niko Vangarelli rushing 19 times for 76.

Right Bracket Semifinal: No. 3 Mt. Paran Christian at No. 2 Athens Academy



Upper Left Bracket

No. 8 Mt. Zion-Carroll 10, (9-2) at No. 1 Manchester 6 (11-0)

Lower Left Bracket

No. 5 Clinch County 21 (9-2) at No. 4 Mitchell County 0 (10-1)

Left Bracket Semifinal: No. 8 Mt. Zion-Carroll at No. 5 Clinch County

Upper Right Bracket

No. 2 Irwin County 21, No. 7 Macon County 15

After a scoreless first quarter, a 15-yard touchdown run by D.J. Lundy in the second made it a 7-0 Irwin County (11-1) lead. Macon County (8-4) got a 49-yard return on the ensuing kickoff and Jadarrius Hicks threw a 27-yard pass to receiver Keldric Thomas to help set up a 1-yard rushing touchdown from Aukeeveous McLendon to tie the game. In the second half, Irwin’s Jay Stanley had a 3-yard rushing touchdown. Stanley carried the ball again for a successful 2-point conversion to give the Indians an 8-point lead, 15-7. A fourth-quarter 21-yard touchdown run by Hicks and a successful two-point

conversion attempt tied the score at 15-15, but with less than five minutes left to play, Lundy found the end zone from 1 yard out to solidify an Irwin County win.

Lower Right Bracket

No. 3 Emanuel County Institute 49, No. 11 Charlton County 25

Right Bracket Semifinal: No. 3 Emanuel County Institute at No. 2 Irwin County

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