Sad Friday for ranked AAA teams
The roller coaster that is Class AAA high school football took some serious twists and turns Friday, leaving the top-10 rankings in a jumbled mess. There were losses, losses and more losses.
But first, the good news.
When Greater Atlanta Christian took the field against Valor Christian in Highland Ranch, Co., Friday night, Davis Mills was back on the field months earlier than anyone expected. Mills, a Super 11 selection and Stanford commitment, did not have the best night statistically, but he ran for a touchdown, passed for a 2-point conversion and showed few ill effects from a knee injury that was supposed to have sidelined him until the playoffs.
GAC quarterback Davis Mills (16) attempts a pass in the second half of their game against Lovett at Greater Atlanta Christian Friday in Norcross, Ga., October 30, 2015. GAC won 34-7. (Jason Getz/AJC)
The bad news? GAC, ranked No. 2, lost 21-17. The Spartans were not alone. Of the seven top-10 AAA teams that played Friday, four went down, including No. 1 Pace, which lost 38-10 against Thomson; No. 9 Pierce County, which lost 24-17 to Richmond Hill, and No. 10 Monroe, which lost 35-7 to Thomas County Central.
The Pace loss might be surprising to some, but Thomson is ranked No. 2 in Class AAAA and seems to be returning to its historical form.
Pace coach Chris Slade didn’t mince words on what his team faced.
“They came in here and kicked our butts,” Slade said. “Hey, if you play football long enough you’re going to get a butt-kicking. Tonight, we got a butt-kicking.”
A few teams held serve:
— No. 3 Cedar Grove had little trouble in a 40-0 victory against Columbia. It was a nice rebound from the last outing, a 21-20 loss to Southwest DeKalb in which the Saints committed penalties, turnovers and missed a potential game-winning field goal.
— Peach County coach Chad Campbell bemoaned the fact that his team was showing scant improvement after last week’s 21-20 victory against Warner Robins. The Trojans, ranked fourth, might have taken the next step with a 38-6 victory against Perry. Antonio Gilbert passed 10 for 16 passing for 90 yards and a touchdown. Devontae Howard caught a 46-yard touchdown pass late in the third quarter that gave Peach a three possession lead. Peach County’s only loss came against No. 1 ranked Houston County of Class AAAAAA and Super 11 quarterback Jake Fromm, who passed for more than 400 yards against the Trojans.
Richard LeCounte, a two-time all-state selection, is the nation’s consensus No. 1 recruit at safety. (Ryon Horne/AJC)
— According to the Savannah Morning News, Liberty County star player Richard LeCounte apologized about having a bad game in the Panthers’ 32-21 victory against Jenkins. LeCounte, a Super 11 selection and UGA commitment, only had one touchdown on a 20-yard reception and one interception. He’s used to more. But quarterback Jaalon Frazier picked up the slack, completing three touchdown passes and running for two. The Morning News credited Frazier with 12 of 16 pass completions for 203 yards. He ran for 129.
No. 6 Calhoun, No. 7 Lovett and No. 8 Westminster had the night off, which might be a good thing. They, too, may have avoided a bad coaster ride and could move up in the rankings this week.