Heavy rains from the remnants of Hurricane Harvey will drift northeastward from the Gulf Coast Friday night, forcing the coaches and film crews inside and squeezing our broadcast crew out. The only thing that would stop the action is lightning. Fiingers crossed. And next weekend, four of our schools play, but all are on the road, so we’ll be silent next week too. That doesn’t stop us, however, from giving the Forsyth Sports 365 Sports Freak’s takes on the soggy play ahead. Here’s a look at this week’s situations across Class 7A, Region 5.
Forsyth Central at River Ridge
Last week Forsyth Central opened their season hosting long time rival Dawson County in the Dog Pound in a most ominous fashion: shut out by the Tigers 9-0. The offense’s struggles could be magnified this week as the Bulldogs take on a 6A River Ridge team in Woodstock that has piled up 86 points in its two wins this young season. The balanced offense will be a challenge for Central, especially if their offense can’t keep the Knights O off the field. Senior QB Brad Thiltgen will have to improve on his 107 yd, 2 int, 37.9 QB rating if the Bulldogs hope to stay with the Knights in this one.
FS365 SPORTS FREAK’S FEARLESS PICK: River Ridge 31 Forsyth Central 17
LAMBERT AT COLLINS HILL
Last week the Longhorns opened their season as defending Region 5 7A Champs with high hopes against a Mountain View squad returning the players that led to the Bears’ best season in decades. Mountain View didn’t disappoint as Sr QB Matt Edwards threw for three touchdowns and 2016 Region 6 Player of the Year receiver Malachai Carter caught one and added 107 yards on the night in the Bears 31-13 win. The Longhorns struggled on offense, turning to Sr DB Marcus Chatelain to get something going. Chatelain rushed for 90+ yards, but the Horns couldn’t find the end zone often enough to keep up. This week Lambert travels to Collins Hill for another showdown with a Region 7 opponent. The Eagles opened the season with a big win over Shiloh but then lost at Norcross in a close one. The teams are pretty evenly matched, but Lambert is another school that will have to find some answers on offense if they want to repeat as Region 5 7A Champs.
FS365 SPORTS FREAK’S FEARLESS PICK: Lambert 24 Collins Hill 17
NORTH FORSYTH VS LOGANVILLE AT NORTH
North Forsyth won last week in their home opener vs Johns Creek 28-6. Sadly, All Region candidate receiver Clayton Bardall was injured early in that contest. But the Raiders might have found some sliver lining as Sophomore receiver Nicky Dalmolin lit it up with 190 yards receiving and two touchdowns in the Raider’s triumph. QB Ben Bayles set school records in passes, attempts and yardage, throwing for 400 yards and three touchdowns. They’ll need all of that and more as the Loganville Red Devils invades Raider Valley. Loganville lost their opener at home 24-14, but put up 350 yards of offense in the losing effort. North on the other hand lost a heartbreaker in their opener at Sequoyah, but came back from an early two touchdown deficit to take the lead and hold it until the late field goal did them in. Carrying that momentum forward, the defense stepped up vs Johns Creek and held the team that put 21 on Lassiter to just a lone touchdown. Something’s brewing in Raider Country, and it could signal an exciting regional battle in a few weeks.
FS365 SPORTS FREAK’S FEARLESS PICK: North Forsyth 34 Loganville 14
SOUTH FORSYTH VS CENTENNIAL AT SOUTH
South Forsyth began the season with a win for all time in the Corky Kell Classic, topping then #2 Roswell 17-14 min 2 OT. we posed the question several times in the days immediately after that: Is South’s upcoming game against little brother Pinecrest Academy a trap? Will the Eagles, still basking in the glow of the opening W, look past the Paladins? LOL, NO. Head Coach Jeff Arnette told us in his preseason interview that this game was circled on the Eagles calendar as a must win. And did they. QB Cal Morris, playing just the first quarter, was three for three with three touchdowns, and the Eagles rushed for 187 yards and five more touchdowns in their 56-10 victory. Now comes former 6A rival Centennial. If anything changes weather wise and we’re able to get in the booth at South, this will be our game of the week. But the forecast makes it very unlikely.The Knights lost their opener to Wheeler in a thriller, 42-38, showing the ability to move the football. But South Forsyth is for real in Class 7A, and Centennial is about to find out why they’re glad to not be on the same region any more.
FS365 SPORTS FREAK’S FEARLESS PICK: South Forsyth 42 Centennial 14
WEST FORSYTH BYE
West Forsyth will have a well earned week off after two inspiring opening season wins over Woodstock in the battle of the Wolverines at West, and on the road against an always tough Pace Academy team. Senor QB Zach Burns has shown his summer conditioning and work on his delivery has really paid of. He’s also found other targets than Vanderbilt commit receiver Ben Bresnahan, which forces defenses that cheat to pay a heavy fee. West Forsyth takes the field next week at Hillgrove.