High school headlines

Marietta football icon ‘Friday’ Richards has died

Marietta football icon ‘Friday’ Richards has died

James “Friday’’ Richards, a former Marietta High star football player and head coach and one of the school’s most iconic and beloved figures, has died. He was 64.  Richards was an all-state player at Marietta in 1971, when he rushed for 2,090 yards. He went on to play at the University of Florida. He was drafted in the seventh round by New York Jets in 1976 and spent two...
Memorial service to be held for former Woodward coach Stallings

Memorial service to be held for former Woodward coach Stallings

A memorial service for former Woodward Academy wrestling and football coach Johnny Stallings will be held Sunday at 3 p.m. in the Woodward Academy Main Gymnasium. Visitation with the family will be held in the adjacent Tyler Brown Student Center from 2 to 3 p.m. Stallings, a member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, the Georgia Athletic Coaches Hall of Fame and the Macon Sports Hall of Fame,...
Parkview sophomore named Gatorade girls soccer player of year

Parkview sophomore named Gatorade girls soccer player of year

Nieva Gaither of Parkview is the Gatorade Georgia girls soccer player of the year. Gaither, a 5-foot-3 sophomore forward, led the Panthers to a 23-1 record and the Class AAAAAAA championship this year. Gaither scored 37 goals and passed for 10 assists, including one of each in Parkview’s 2-0 win over Milton in the title game.  Gaither recorded at least one point in all 24 games with 11...
Region 3-AAAA Breakdown

Region 3-AAAA Breakdown

The countdown to Region 1 continues. This week, I’m highlighting Region 3. Links from each of the previous region previews will be provided in each upcoming preview. Region 3 shrunk down to five teams after the departure of Hephzibah, which was dropped two classes to Class AA’s Region 4 after the mid-point reclassification cycle. Burke County’s Eric Parker is entering his 12th season...

A little football talk to help you through the summer

With the 2017-2018 high school sports season in the books, it’s time to look ahead to 2018-2019. So here’s a little football news to tide you over until the blog starts up again in August. ELCA is ELCA, even in the spring Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy won its third consecutive Class A Private state title last season, capping one of the most dominant campaigns in state history...
High school Athletes of the Year for 2017-2018

High school Athletes of the Year for 2017-2018

Standout performances by these athletes led to individual and team success during the 2017-2018 school year:  Anthony Seigler, Cartersville: The switch-hitting senior catcher batted .421 with 10 doubles, three triples, 13 home runs, 16 stolen bases and a .587 on-base percentage for the Class AAAA runner-up team. He threw out 12 of 21 runners attempting to steal a base. He also is an ambidextrous...
Cartersville catcher is first Georgia high school player taken in MLB Draft

Cartersville catcher is first Georgia high school player taken in MLB Draft

Anthony Seigler, a switch-hitting catcher from Cartersville, was the first Georgia high school player taken in the Major League Baseball Draft on Monday.  Seigler went in the first round, No. 23 overall, to the Yankees. Seigler hit .421 with 13 home runs and a .587 on-base percentage as a senior for a team that reached the Class AAAA final. Seigler also is an ambidextrous pitcher but projects...

Legendary track coach Edgar Johnson stepping away after 40 years

When Edgar Johnson began teaching science at the newly-opened Shaw High School in Columbus in 1978, he didn’t know that his benevolent gesture to “help out” with coaching the track team would turn into a 40-year passion. But it did. Johnson eventually became girls’ head coach in 1993 and took over the entire program six years later. Under his leadership, the Raider girls won...
Region 4-AAAA Breakdown

Region 4-AAAA Breakdown

The countdown to Region 1 continues. This week, I’m highlighting Region 4. Links from each of the previous region previews will be provided in each upcoming preview. This eight-team region gives each of its teams just three non-region games to prepare for a seven-game region lineup, but its teams should be well-prepared as non-region challenges wait across the board: Luella faces Cartersville...
Football: Changes abound ... plus season openers for everyone

Football: Changes abound ... plus season openers for everyone

The countdown has started for high school football. All the teams have completed spring workouts and their scrimmages. Now they are hitting the weight room, participating in 7-on-7 camps and running the bleachers to get ready for the 2018 season. There will a few changes for Class AAAAA this fall.  Former University of Georgia star and NFL running back Robert Edwards has opted to leave Greene...
Final baseball rankings: Pope, Tattnall Square only pre-playoff No. 1s to win titles

Final baseball rankings: Pope, Tattnall Square only pre-playoff No. 1s to win titles

Parkview won its seventh state title with a sweep over Mill Creek in Class AAAAAAA. The other two semifinalists, Woodstock and Brookwood, finish third and fourth, respectively, and North Paulding, which reached the quarterfinals and played two close games with Mill Creek, finishes fifth. Etowah surged into the Top 10 despite an overall losing record after reaching the quarters. Pope won its second-consecutive...

Cedar Grove football has big-time talent in key spots

When Cedar Grove walked off the field after its loss to Calhoun in the semifinals of the 2017 Class AAA football playoffs, the Saints held their heads high.A winning streak of 23 games, the longest streak in DeKalb County history, had been snapped, but Cedar Grove's last loss had come against Westminster on Sept. 23, 2016. The Saints stormed through the bracket in 2016, beating Crisp County 55-0 in...
Baseball final wrapup: From Pope’s comeback to Benedictine’s freshman phenom to victory celebrations

Baseball final wrapup: From Pope’s comeback to Benedictine’s freshman phenom to victory celebrations

The 2018 baseball season is in the books. It was a great week for the state finals. Well, except for the rain. But consider these highlights … -A freshman, Carter Holton of Benedictine, pitched a one-hit shutout with 10 strikeouts in the clinching victory over Berrien. Holton finished the year 11-2 with an 0.76 ERA as a hitcher and hit .433 with seven homers. -Pope was down to its final out...
Football: Starr’s Mill finds plenty of potential QBs in spring workouts

Football: Starr’s Mill finds plenty of potential QBs in spring workouts

The Starr’s Mill football team had players and assistant coaches scattered to different sports for much of spring practice. But that’s OK with coach Chad Phillips, who believes guys shouldn’t be limited to one sport and encourages participation in spring activities. So as far at spring football, Phillips said, “We made the most of it.” The Panthers sustained some big...
Day 4 baseball championship recaps: Parkview, Lovett capture titles to wrap up season

Day 4 baseball championship recaps: Parkview, Lovett capture titles to wrap up season

The prep baseball season ended Thursday night with a Game 3 finals win by Lovett over Westminster in Class AAA and a doubleheader sweep by Parkview over Mill Creek in Class AAAAAAA. It was Lovett’s ninth baseball state title all-time and Parkview’s seventh. Parkview took two hotly contested games, the first in eight innings, from Mill Creek to win the championship on its home field. In...
Day 3 baseball championship recaps: Pope, Jefferson take titles in Rome

Day 3 baseball championship recaps: Pope, Jefferson take titles in Rome

The Class AAAA and AAAAAA finals series concluded Wednesday night at State Mutual Stadium in Rome. Jefferson won 6-3 in Game 3 of the AAAA championship to give the Dragons their first baseball state title, and Pope exploded in the final inning to pull away from Allatoona 10-2 as the Greyhounds took back-to-back crowns in AAAAAA. Jefferson batted around in the opening inning of the Class AAAA decisive...
Region 5-AAAA Breakdown

Region 5-AAAA Breakdown

The countdown to Region 1 continues. This week, I’m highlighting Region 5. Links from each of the previous region previews will be provided in each upcoming preview. Region 5: Cartersville, Cedartown, Central-Carroll, Chapel Hill, LaGrange, Sandy Creek, Troup Cartersville has won six consecutive region championships, with five perfect regular seasons, two state titles and an incredible...

Updated baseball: 7A series moved to Parkview, rest to Rome

Except for the highest classification, all remaining games in the high school baseball best-of-three championship series will be played at State Mutual Stadium in Rome, the GHSA has announced.  Weather issues this week and the lack of other available sites led to the move to Rome, where the weather forecast is better than for other parts of the state in the next couple of days.  The Class...
Football: A productive spring at Warner Robins

Football: A productive spring at Warner Robins

It was a good spring at Warner Robins, where last year’s state runner-up escaped without major injuries and began to find some players to plug in to replace those who graduated.  “A lot of guys stepped up,” coach Mike Chastain said. “We’re going to be a little younger this year and we’ve got a good ninth grade class that we think could be special.” Warner...

Greater Atlanta Christian shows no signs of slowing down heading into 2018

Greater Atlanta Christian has been a powerhouse in Class AA and Class AAA football for the past four seasons, and it would be remiss to think the metro Atlanta program won't factor in 2018.The Spartans have repeated as region champions each year since 2014. In the past 10 years, GAC has been to the championship game twice, the semifinals three times and the second round twice. Last season, the Spartan...
State golf roundup: Mill Creek, North Gwinnett capture top classification

State golf roundup: Mill Creek, North Gwinnett capture top classification

The Mill Creek boys defended their title in the Class AAAAAAA golf championship, while the North Gwinnett girls won their first title in the state’s highest division.  Mill Creek, led by Georgia Tech commitment Luka Karaulic, was awarded the victory when the second round was rained out at Sunset Country Club in Moultrie. The Hawks shot 13-over, with Karaulic shooting 71, J.T. Smith shooting...
Day 2 baseball championship recaps

Day 2 baseball championship recaps

Three of Tuesday's four baseball finals series were affected by rain, with the Class AAAAAAA doubleheader between Parkview and Mill Creek rescheduled from UGA's Foley Field to Rome's State Mutual Stadium on Thursday at 1 p.m. Both the Class AAAAAA Allatoona-Pope series at Rome and the Class A-Private Tattnall Square-Prince Avenue series at Macon were delayed but completed their doubleheaders. Gordon...
UPDATED 5/29: Lacrosse season wrap-up

UPDATED 5/29: Lacrosse season wrap-up

Welcome to the final blog post of the 2017-18 school year. It has been a blast covering Class AA football and basketball, and A-5A and 6A-7A lacrosse. I look forward to doing so again in 2018-19. And congratulations to the four lacrosse state champions, who were crowned on Saturday at Kennesaw State. The champions are: Lambert Longhorns (6A-7A) Milton Lady War Eagles (6A-7A) Blessed Trinity Titans...
Day 1 baseball championship recaps: Loganville, Benedictine sweep for state titles

Day 1 baseball championship recaps: Loganville, Benedictine sweep for state titles

The GHSA baseball state championships got underway Monday night at four locations throughout the state, with Class AAAAA, AAAA, AAA and AA beginning their championship series. Two series ended in doubleheader sweeps, and two will go to decisive Game 3s on Wednesday. Loganville held on in Game 2 to win 3-2 and sweep Buford for the Class AAAAA championship, their fourth state title all-time, all since...
Champs in good shape after first round of state golf tournaments

Champs in good shape after first round of state golf tournaments

  Defending champions are faring well after the first round of the state golf championships. A half-dozen teams are in first or second place after 18 holes. The tournaments will be completed on Wednesday.    Boys Class AAAAAAA: Defending champion Mill Creek holds a four-shot lead after the first day at Sunset Country Club in Moultrie behind a 1-under 71 from Georgia Tech signee Luka...
Final lacrosse rankings: Blessed Trinity sweeps A-5A, Lambert boys and Milton girls take top classes

Final lacrosse rankings: Blessed Trinity sweeps A-5A, Lambert boys and Milton girls take top classes

The Lambert boys defeated defending champion Lassiter 12-6 in the boys Class 6A-7A championship and capped off a perfect 22-0 season in the process. The Longhorns finish No. 1 ahead of Lassiter. No. 3 Centennial lost 15-14 to Lambert in the semis and No. 4 North Gwinnett fell 10-9 in overtime to Lassiter in the semifinals. In Class A-5A, No. 1 Blessed Trinity defeated No. 2 Greater Atlanta Christian...
Competition for state golf championships begin Monday

Competition for state golf championships begin Monday

The Mill Creek boys and Lambert girls are among the teams who will defend their state titles when the GHSA golf championship begin around the state.  The championships will be contested over two days, with all schools competing over 36 holes for the second straight year. Only two schools failed to qualify to defend their championships. Class AAAAAAA boys at Sunset Country Club, Moultrie: ...
Baseball finals primer: History lesson on the 16 finalists

Baseball finals primer: History lesson on the 16 finalists

Here’s a historical look at the 16 state baseball finalists, who will take the field beginning Monday or Tuesday for eight championship series in from Rome to Savannah, Macon to Athens. Find out what team is 6-0 all-time in state-championship series, the frequency of all-Gwinnett, all-Cobb or all-Atlanta state finals, the five schools that are in the state finals for the first time, and the...
Region 6-AAAA Breakdown

Region 6-AAAA Breakdown

The countdown to Region 1 continues. This week, I’m highlighting Region 6. Links from each of the previous region previews will be provided in each upcoming preview. Geographically, Region 6-AAAA is Georgia’s most northwest region out of all the classifications and will be represented by its reigning champ, Ridgeland, in the first football game that will be played in the entire 2018 GHSA...
Is Peach County rebuilding or reloading for 2018 season?

Is Peach County rebuilding or reloading for 2018 season?

This is the second installment of a series looking at the teams that finished in the top four after the 2017 football season. Last week: Calhoun. Next week: Greater Atlanta Christian.One of Class AAA's best programs lost some of the state's best players to graduation, but Peach County coach Chad Campbell thinks it would be remiss to take the Trojans lightly during the 2018 season.He's not sure how...
A-5A lacrosse playoffs update

A-5A lacrosse playoffs update

On Tuesday, we took a look at the high class. Now we will check in on A-5A. We are down to the final round and championship Saturday will take place at Kennesaw State. For a preview of championship Saturday, go here.  In A-5A, No. 4 GAC and No. 5 Blessed Trinity will meet on the boys’ side, while on the girls side No. 1 Blessed Trinty will play No. 4 Starr’s Mill. Before...
GHSA Baseball Championships set; matchups begin Monday at four locations

GHSA Baseball Championships set; matchups begin Monday at four locations

After a week full of rain for the semifinals, the matchups for next week’s GHSA state baseball championships became official late Thursday night after five games were completed. Tattnall Square swept First Presbyterian in two games at the Class A-Private level while Telfair County beat Irwin in a deciding game at Class A-Public. At Class AAAAAA, Allatoona beat Alpharetta 8-1 on a night when...
MLB.com mock draft projects five Georgia high schoolers in first round

MLB.com mock draft projects five Georgia high schoolers in first round

Five Georgia high school players are projected to go in the first round of the June MLB Draft in two weeks, according to the latest mock draft by Jonathan May of MLB.com. That doesn’t count Mayo’s projection as the No. 2 pick, Joey Bart of Georgia Tech. Bart is a former catcher at Buford.  The five current Georgia high school players in Mayo’s list are outfielder Parker Meadows...
2018 GHSA Lacrosse State Championship Preview

2018 GHSA Lacrosse State Championship Preview

The GHSA 2018 Lacrosse State Championships are set for Saturday, May 19 at Kennesaw State University’s Fifth Third Bank Stadium. It will be the first time that all four championship matches will share a centralized location and take place on the same day. In the girls Class A-5A final, two-time defending state champion Blessed Trinity will face a Starr’s Mill squad that stormed past Westminster...

Wednesday spring scores

Across the state, the threat of weather postponed several semifinal games which will be made up, weather pending, tomorrow.  The Alpharetta/Allatoona Game 3, the Telfair/Irwin County Game 2, and the entire semifinal series between First Presbyterian and Tattnall Square has been moved to tomorrow.  In the games that were able to be played, Telfair County defeated Irwin County 8-5. Bowdon...

Final boys soccer rankings

The season came to an end over the weekend at Mercer in Macon and McEachern in Powder Springs as 28 teams battled it out to determine who was the best in their respective classes. In the state’s highest classification, Lambert won its second state boys soccer title following a 3-2 victory over South Forsyth in the championship game. Chattahoochee defended its title in Class AAAAAA after defeating...

Final girls soccer rankings

Parkview won its ninth girls soccer title with a 2-0 victory over Milton in the state’s highest classification. The Lady Panthers were a force through the 2000s, winning five titles, but had not won since 2013. In Class AAAAAA, Alpharetta won its first-ever girls soccer title following its 3-2 victory over Glynn Academy. Alpharetta entered the playoffs as the No. 4 seed from Region 7 before...

State title highlights bring boys soccer season to an end 

The soccer season came to an end this weekend at McEachern in Powder Springs and Mercer University in Macon with countless highlights dominating the championship weekend.The Westminster girls and boys teams successfully defended their titles for the second consecutive season in Class AAA, making it four in a row for the Lady Wildcats. Benedictine’s Gavin Stewart had a career performance in the...

Updated baseball semifinals wrapup: Allatoona beats Alpharetta

The semifinal round is now complete, and it’s on to the state finals of the baseball playoffs. Those begin Monday. In the final semifinal series, finished Thursday, Allatoona defeated Alpharetta 8-1 in a Game three of the Class AAAAAA playoffs. Allatoona advances to face Pope in an all-Cobb County championship series.Similar matchups will occur in AAAAAAA (Mill Creek and Parkview of Gwinnett...

If the boys held a “Meet of Champions” ...

After the conclusion to the state championship meets over the weekend, we took a look at which classification on the girls’ side would come out ahead in an all-classification “Meet of Champions.  The largest classification, AAAAAAA, dominated by posting the overall top time in nine out of the 16 events at the state meet. Classes AAAAA, AAAA, and AAA each had two of the best marks...
Baseball semifinal wrapup: Jefferson stuns Blessed Trinity; Lovett, Westminster make AAA final; Parkview, Mill Creek survive Game 3

Baseball semifinal wrapup: Jefferson stuns Blessed Trinity; Lovett, Westminster make AAA final; Parkview, Mill Creek survive Game 3

Blessed Trinity – ranked No. 1 nationally by Baseball America – fell to Jefferson. Parkview and Mill Creek survived must-win Game 2 situations in extra innings before each won Tuesday in their Game 3’s. It’s a Lovett-Westminster cross-Buckhead final in AAA.  Defending champs Pope and Loganville keep rolling along. Most of the semifinals are done. Here’s a look at...

Tuesday spring scores

Buford’s Evan Place put the ball in play during the bottom of the seventh to score the winning run. The Wolves bested the Falcons 3-2 in game one of their class 5A semifinal series. In game two, Grant James’ RBI single in the top of the seventh helped seal the 1-0 victory the Wolves needed to advance to the finals. Jefferson swept a strong Blessed Trinity with scores of 10-7 and 2-0. This...
6A-7A lacrosse playoffs update

6A-7A lacrosse playoffs update

We are down to the final four teams in 6A-7A, with the semifinal games to be played on Wednesday. On the boys’ side, the No. 3 North Gwinnett Bulldogs will host the No. 2 Lassiter Trojans, while the top-ranked Lambert Longhorns will travel to the No. 4 Centennial Knights.  On the girls’ side, the No. 2 Lassiter Lady Trojans travel to the No. 6 Mill Creek Lady and top-ranked Milton...
Girls soccer: State championship recaps

Girls soccer: State championship recaps

Class AAA Westminster and Class AA St. Vincent’s Academy successfully defended their titles at the GHSA girls soccer championships, held last weekend at McEachern High and Mercer University. Here’s a recap of the seven championship matches: Parkview 2, Milton 0  *Recap: Second-ranked Parkview survived penalty kicks in the quarterfinals against No. 9 Hillgrove and the semifinals against...

Monday spring playoff scores

The threat of weather pushed several series in the GHSA baseball state playoffs to Monday night with hopes of avoiding any postponements. In the state's highest classification, Woodstock defeated Parkview 4-3 in the first game. Game 2 was hardly fought and after going to extra innings tied at 1, Parkview scored three runs in the top of the eighth and finished the game 5-1 to force a Game 3. The Brookwood-Mill...
Tennis: Young teams, first-time champs raise trophies and expectations for 2019

Tennis: Young teams, first-time champs raise trophies and expectations for 2019

The Rome Tennis Center at Berry College made a grand debut on Saturday, accommodating 80 total lines of GHSA state championship matches, and crowning six first-time champions to cap an incredibly competitive 2018 season.  In Class AAAAAAA, the Walton girls had swept their way through the bracket to reach the finals, and with 19 previous state titles, had rarely ran into such an intensely, important...
Football: Carrollton finishes spring with intriguing options at QB

Football: Carrollton finishes spring with intriguing options at QB

The reloading has begun at Carrollton, which completed a productive spring practice last week with an intrasquad game. The Trojans, starting their third season under coach Sean Calhoun, are expected to again be among the contenders in Class AAAAA. “I asked them for 10 good days and they were able to give that to me,” Calhoun said. Carrollton went a different direction this spring. The...

If the girls held a “Meet of Champions”

Congratulations to the 2018 state champions.  Boys: Parkview (AAAAAAA), Allatoona (AAAAAA), Dutchtown (AAAAA), St. Pius (AAAA), Cedar Grove (AAA), Elbert County (AA), Montgomery County (A-Public), and Riverside Military (A-Private). Girls: Marietta (AAAAAAA), Alexander (AAAAAA), Buford (AAAAA), Chapel Hill (AAAA), Monroe (AAA), Vidalia (AA), Georgia Military (A-Public) and Wesleyan (A-Private)...
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