The second round of the high school playoffs begin Friday and two APS (Atlanta Public Schools) teams remain in the playoffs.
The Carver-Atlanta Panthers and the Hornets of South Atlanta are the two teams continuing to battle for a chance to compete for a State title at Center-Parc Stadium in late December.
The Hornets will be hosting the Bremen Blue Devils tonight inside Lakewood Stadium at 7:30 p.m. seeking to continue their historic season. After winning their first region championship and first playoff game, they strive to advance to the quarterfinals for the first time in school history.
After defeating Chattooga 26-14 last Saturday, Hornets head coach Brad Stevens knew that his team had to play better going into this game.
“We are going to try to eliminate mistakes and try to win this ballgame,” said Stevens. “You want to come in a game like this and you want to win big but to battle for four quarters and have to keep playing, that makes us better for the next round.”
The Blue Devils come from a tough region in Class AA in region 5 that features powerhouse Callaway Cavaliers as the favorites to win the state title this year. The winner will face the winner of Jefferson Davis-Jefferson County. If the Hornets matchup with Jefferson County, a coin toss by the GHSA will determine who hosts.
The Panthers of Carver-Atlanta will go on the road to Flowery Branch to battle Cherokee-Bluff Friday night. They are coming off of a 32-21 win against Hart County but will face a lot of adversity.
Three of Carver Atlanta’s four running backs are injured and have been ruled out for tonight’s game. Panthers head coach Darren Myles was optimistic about the health of his star runningbacks but is confident in his team’s depth going into this game.
“We always preach, ‘Coach them all.’ We have a plethora of young running backs that are good. Now we’re going to have to find a way to get them involved in the gameplan from the beginning,” said Myles after the game against Hart County.
Runningbacks Jarveous Brown and Devonte Amasiani were injured in Friday night’s win and could be a huge loss for the Panthers if neither are unable to go. Amasiani also plays linebacker on the defense.
Runningbacks Terrico Faulks, Tavion Mann, Shoun Bilal will be seeing a lot of playing time Friday if Brown and Amasiani are unable to go.
Gametime is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. in Flowery Branch.