Posted: Saturday, November 23rd 2013 at 5:08am
Football playoffs: Area quartet plays on into quarterfinals
By Morgan Lee Editor
Gainesville's Jay Gaudlock dives to haul in a third quarter touchdown catch in the Red Elephants' playoff defeat of South Paulding on Friday in City Park.
Two area teams rolled, two area teams battled but all four are thrilled to still be alive in the state football playoffs.
Meanwhile, three other area teams saw their seasons come to an end on Friday in the second round, as Chestatee, Commerce and White County all fell.
(NOTE:Scroll down for a complete look at area scores and the quarterfinal match-ups for area teams.)
Gainesville and Buford reveled in their identities in Friday's second round playoffs -- the Red Elephants dazzled South Paulding with 637 yards of offense in a 51-12 win in the Class AAAAA bracket, while Buford allowed just 215 yards in a 40-7 shutdown of Woodward Academy in Class AAA.
After passing for just 20 yards in last week's first round win, Deshaun Watson torched the Spartans for 432 yards and five passing touchdowns, while also rushing for 107 yards.
Buford, meanwhile, scored on defense and special teams and stonewalled the War Eagles for most of the contest.
The most thrilling finishes came in Classes AA and AAAAAA, however.
Jefferson rallied on the road, outscoring Heard County 61-57 to get back into the Class AA third round.
North Gwinnett, meanwhile, pulled off a 34-32 comeback at Archer to keep its title hopes alive in Class AAAAAA.
In Class AAAA, No. 1 Sandy Creek proved too much for Chestatee, ending the War Eagles historic season with a 55-7 win in Tyrone. Chestatee saw its deepest ever playoff run come to an end after the Patriots pulled out to a 35-7 halftime lead.
In Class AAA, White County could not make history by clinching its first ever quarterfinal berth, falling 38-0 at Blessed Trinity -- the Warriors' second straight playoff defeat to the Titans and fourth in two seasons.
And, in Class A, Charlton County sprinted to a 21-0 first quarter lead and fended off a Commerce comeback attempt to knock out the Tigers 35-21.
The Red Elephants (11-1) will look to keep rolling at home in next week's quarterfinals, playing host to a Mundy's Mill team that upset top-seeded Lee County 41-35.
Buford (12-0), meanwhile, won a coin flip for home field advantage over familiar foe Carver, Columbus on Saturday morning. Carver took out Jefferson County 19-0 on Friday.
After already taking one long road trip this week, Jefferson (10-2) will take another next week, as the Dragons head out to face Lamar County -- which defeated Thomasville 38-20.
North Gwinnett will also look to be road warriors again, as the Bulldogs (11-1) go on make third straight road playoff appearance, this time trekking to Hillgrove, which knocked off Camden County 34-21 this week.
(NOTE:Check our Sports and Friday Game Night pages for complete game stories and video highlights of the area's teams.)
AREA FOOTBALL PLAYOFF SCORES, NOV. 22
Blessed Trinity 38, White County 0
Buford 40, Woodward Academy 7
Charlton County 35, Commerce 21
Gainesville 51, South Paulding 12
Jefferson 61, Heard County 57
North Gwinnett 34, Archer 32
Sandy Creek 55, Chestatee 7
QUARTERFINAL PLAYOFF MATCH-UPS FOR AREA TEAMS
North Gwinnett at Hillgrove
Mundy's Mill at Gainesville
Carver, Columbus at Buford
Jefferson at Lamar County
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