BUFORD -- Every Friday, the Buford Wolves get their opponent's best shot, and every Friday, they turn them away in the same fashion - with dominant defense and a consistent ground game.
FLOWERY BRANCH - Flowery Branch coach Lee Shaw remembers that first big win. It was in the first round of the playoffs in 2005 against a dominant Elbert County program.
Monroe-Albany at Gainesville
The aged and outdated field house at City Park Stadium, which is used by Gainesville High's football program, may soon be a thing of the past.
Imagine for a minute that Gainesville's offense in practice is like a science lab experiment, except with moving parts and bodies in motion.
Due to the distance of travel, the kickoff of Friday's Flowery Branch-Thomas County Central second round playoff game has been moved to 8 p.m.
BUFORD - Buford senior linebacker Nathan Staub feels like the product the Wolves put on the field speaks for itself. Class AA's top-ranked Wolves (11-0), who play host to Jefferson County (8-3) in the second round of the playoffs Friday, are a team blessed with great leadership and talent, he says. The numbers back that up.
Habersham Central's first round game against Chattahoochee amounted to school history; unfortunately it didn't translate to a victory in the Class AAAA state playoffs.
CALHOUN - Jefferson did a lot a good things Friday night in the first round of the Class AA state playoffs against Calhoun, but it was what the Dragons didn't do that led them to a 39-6 defeat on the road.
There way no one of the field Friday at City Park Stadium happier with Gainesville's 48-27 win against Dalton than its coach Bruce Miller.
BUFORD - Beginning the playoffs in pursuit of their fifth consecutive state title, the Buford Wolves wanted to get off to a fast start.
Kevin Ellison had 345 yards of total offense and six touchdowns for the Raiders as they lost 65-48 to Chatahoochee in the first round of the Class AAAA state playoffs on Friday in Alpharetta.
JOHNS CREEK - The Flowery Branch Falcons have a play that they have practiced every week which they call "Big Ben." To others it's called a Hail Mary.
Lincoln County bested Commerce 35-14 on Friday night in the first round of the Class A state playoffs at Lincolnton.
Banks County lost to Adairsville 21-3 Friday in the first round of the Class AA state playoffs in Adairsvile.
Gainesville at Allatoona
BUFORD - For Evyn Cooper, it was all about being the next man up.
HAMILTON – Mikey Gonzalez has carved out his own legacy for Gainesville. His year as the Red Elephants' signal-caller will be remembered for winning huge games with clutch performances.
JEFFERSON - The No. 1-seed Jefferson Dragons put together another dominant performance in the Class AAA state playoffs Friday night at Memorial Stadium, ousting the No. 3-seeded Dodge County Indians, 27-7.
COMMERCE - Once Will Thomas found running room, there was no stopping him.
Gainesville at Harris County
Michael Byrd's joy can be found in watching his two sons playing football for Gainesville High on Fridays in the fall. Part of the excitement is watching his sons, Michael and Chris, following in his footsteps as standouts for the Red Elephants. The other part is just the paternal joy of watching the next generation do what they love.
Children sat around the stage. West Hall football players stood on stage, and the auditorium was full as Tony Lotti took the stage.
Tapped out of energy from a three-hour slugfest and numb from freezing temperatures most of the night, Gainesville's players were still able to celebrate following Friday's playoff opener against Creekview.
Elbert County bested Lumpkin County 28-18 in the first round of the Class AAA playoffs on Friday night in Dahlonega.
BUFORD - Sixteen different players carried the ball as top-ranked Buford racked up 423 rushing yards on 36 carries to defeat Southeast Whitfield 63-0 in the opening round of the Class AAAA playoffs on Friday at Tom Riden Stadium.
HARTWELL - Bryan Gray looked over his team of quiet, disappointed East Hall Vikings and gave them a simple message following their 42-14 loss at Hart County.
The running of Kwon Williams and Tyquan Statham was a perfect analogy for the West Hall football team's mentality on Friday night. Quite simply, the Spartans refused to go down without a fight.
JEFFERSON - With freezing temperatures, it took a little time for the Jefferson Dragons' offense to warm up offensively during its Class AAA state playoff opener against the Franklin County Lions.
Model beat Union County 50-36 in the Class AA state playoff opener Friday in Blairsville.