Chestatee tight end Noah Baxter put it simply when describing the implications of Friday's state playoff game against Sandy Creek.
When Dalton Whitfield broke his jaw in White County's Week 4 loss to Blessed Trinity last season, he was forced to sit out the Warriors' final seven games.
Second-round football playoff tickets for Gainesville's game against South Paulding will be on sale from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday in the school's front office.
Of the 10 area teams that opened the state playoffs on Friday, only half managed to avoid elimination.
RINGGOLD - Call it courage. Or justice, or karma, or law of averages, or maybe big dumb luck.
CARTERSVILLE - Top-seeded Cartersville came into its first-round playoff matchup with West Hall ranked No. 2 in the state with a perfect 10-0 record and an average margin of victory of more than 40 points per game.
Gainesville coach Bruce Miller wasted little time congratulating his defense for a job well done after it held on for a 28-14 victory against M.L. King and the big passing arm of its quarterback, Roland Rivers, on Friday at City Park Stadium.
For the second straight year, homefield advantage and a higher seeding didn't provide any help for Flowery Branch.
Chestatee overcame a shaky opening quarter and ended up making history on Friday night at War Eagles Stadium.
CLEVELAND - The No. 2-seed White County Warriors defeated the no. 3-seed Adairsville Tigers 52-28 on Friday night in the first round of the state AAA playoffs.
Jefferson opened its Class AA state title defense Friday night with a 28-0 win over Westminster in the first round of the state playoffs.
BUFORD - The offense that moved with ease all year did so again. The defense that gave up yards grudgingly throughout the regular season was just as stingy in the first round of the state playoffs.
Union County ended its season with a 6-5 record after a 56-21 to Lovett, the No. 1 seed from Region 6-AA, in the first round of the state playoffs on Friday night.
Blessed Trinity defeated Jackson County 41-14 in their first-round Class AAA state playoff game Friday in Roswell.
Deshaun Watson was glad to get Thursday morning behind him. Gainesville's starting quarterback, and the state's all-time leading passer, was finally able to sign a financial aid award letter with Clemson University, officially making him a Tiger.
White County's Bill Ballard earned his 100th win as a head coach on Friday in Cleveland as the Warriors beat Habersham Central 35-14 in the teams' season openers.
DAWSONVILLE - Dawson County racked up 501 yards of total offense in a 27-13 win over visiting Lumpkin County on Friday night.
Robert Prunier returned a kickoff for a touchdown to lead Union County in a 41-14 win over Towns County on Friday in Blairsville.
East Jackson defeated Banks County 14-10 in the team's season openers Friday in Commerce.
Fellowship Christian defeated Lakeview Academy 41-14 on Friday night in Roswell.
Jackson County's late comeback attempt fell short Friday night in a 26-21 loss to Winder-Barrow.
For Flowery Branch, tonight's game at second-ranked Northside-Warner Robins is more than a season opener.
For all the eye-popping statistics that Deshaun Watson posted during his record-setting 2012 season, the categories where he avoided large numbers may have been just as important to Gainesville's state championship run.
Chattooga at East Hall
Antonio Pittman's role as a West Hall Spartan has been increasing ever since he first stepped onto the field in Oakwood.
Dawson County struck big in crucial situations to open the season Friday against East Hall in Gainesville. Leading by a small margin with five minutes left to play, Tigers (1-0, 1-0 Region 7-AAA) quarterback Zack Buchan hit running back Cody Lamar in the open field on a third-and-long at the 30 and ran 70 yards for the score, propelling Dawson County to a 29-27 win.
Andrew Smith and Brannon Dyer were the catalysts for the North Hall offense in a 42-31 scrimmage win against Salem (Va.) on Friday in Virginia.
OAKWOOD - This year, the Battle of Oakwood went to the Spartans of West Hall.
Dawson County at East Hall