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Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - 5:36pm

Westminster Sweeps Cross Country Titles; Grady, Chattahoochee Look Forward to Playoffs

Grady clinched the Region 5-AAA title last Friday night, beating Cedar Grove 17-6 for its eighth consecutive win. The Grey Knights (9-1, 6-0 5A-AAA) finished a perfect 9-0 in region competition and held seven of their nine 5-AAA opponents to six points or fewer.
Friday’s showdown at Grady Stadium saw the hosts prevail in typical fashion. They used a suffocating defense and controlled the clock on offense to stifle Cedar Grove (6-4, 5-1 5B-AAA). Grady limited the Saints to 164 passing yards and had three interceptions, one of which was returned 35 yards for a touchdown by Quintavious Knight early in the fourth quarter.
The Grey Knights got a combined 220 yards from running backs Marcus Caffey and Hoderick Lowe, who transferred from Berkmar after winning just a single game last year. “We push each other a lot,” Lowe told the AJC of Caffey. “I love playing with him…. This is the best team I’ve ever played on. Amazing. To be going to the playoffs after going 1-9 last season is really exciting for me.”

Woodward joined Grady in the Class AAA state playoffs, earning the No. 4 seed out of a strong Region 5-AAA behind Grady, Cedar Grove, and St. Pius X. The War Eagles improved to 9-1 overall with a 48-7 drubbing of Washington and they have won three straight since a loss to Cedar Grove on October 15. Woodward scored seven rushing touchdowns against Washington, including three by quarterback Andrew Adams.
Chattahoochee is also storming into the playoffs. The Cougars completed a 10-0 regular season (all 10 wins coming in Region 7-AAAA) last Friday with a 41-7 rout of Rome. Chattahoochee has outscored opponents 413-113, averaging exactly a 30-point margin of victory per game. The team’s closest contest was a convincing 35-14 win over Forsyth Central back on Sept. 10.
Lovett recovered from last week’s setback against Westminster to snag the final playoff spot in Region 6-AA. A 33-13 win over Decatur sent the Lions, semifinalists in 2009, back to the state tournament. The Wildcats traveled to Buford for the region championship and succumbed 42-0 to Class AA’s No. 1 team. Ralph David Abernathy mustered just 47 yards on the ground.
Blessed Trinity’s playoff hopes came to an end last Friday with a 24-19 loss to Great Atlanta Christian, which earned the No. 3 seed in Region 6-AA. Tri-Cities stormed into the postseason with a 21-0 shutout of Mt. Zion, Jonesboro, Alpharetta did the same by defeating North Forsyth 29-13, and Mays also clinched a No. 4 playoff seed by thrashing Chamblee 54-0.

Westminster’s boys and girls swept the Class AA cross country titles last Saturday at Carrollton. The boys placed all seven of their runners in the Top 15, including Tyler Cooke in fourth, Jordan Flowers in eighth, and John Lambert in 10th. Impressive grouping saw all seven Wildcats cross the line in a span of 17 seconds, from 17:14 to 17:31. Lovett’s Parker Whitlock came in third place overall in 17:04.
While the Westminster boys ran away from the competition, scoring 45 points to second-place Lovett’s 77, the girls were tested by Blessed Trinity. Sahara Fletcher finished first individually in 18:27 and the Wildcats also had Parker Rhodes and Lexy Rouse in the Top 10. Blessed Trinity put four runners in the Top 10, led by Kate Beecham in second place, as the Titans finished with 44 points to Westminster’s 33.
Both Woodward and Riverwood were competitive in the two Class AAA meets. On the boys side, Nathan Vassey finished in fourth overall with a time of 15:58 and led the War Eagles to a third-place showing behind St. Pius X and North Hall. Connor McDaniel (11th overall in 16:48) paved the way to a fifth-place team finish for Riverwood. Grady’s Zane Coburn earned eighth place individually with a time of 16:30.
The Raiders were the best Fulton County had to offer in the girls Class AAA competition. They earned a seventh-place finish behind Hannahkohl Almire’s 20:57. Woodward snuck into the Top 10 thanks to a strong 21:09 run by Rachel Ward.
Even though Fulton County teams failed to make noise in Class AAAA and Class AAAAA, several individuals turned in standout performances. Chattahoochee’s Austin Ulich won the Class AAAA boys race with a time of 16:01. In the Class AAAAA girls competition, Brooke Koblitz of Centennial raced to second place in 19:03 and Alpharetta’s Dylan Hassett finished sixth overall in 19:16.