Tim Rucker isn't trying to dramatize the meaning of tonight's Region 8-AAA championship game in Cleveland against White County.
Westminster at Buford
When the Lumpkin County football team puts on the pads to face off with Monroe Area at 7:30 p.m. Friday at J.P. King Memorial Stadium in Dahlonega, there will be more on the line than a spot in the state playoffs.
OAKWOOD - When the coaches from Region 8-AAA were deciding how to figure out this year's playoff teams, Johnson High coach Paul Friel was one of the biggest proponents of a play-in game.
On Friday, Buford will seek its ninth region title in 10 years when it plays host to Westminster at 7:30 p.m. at Tom Riden Stadium.
Flowery Branch High remains No. 6 in Class AAAA in the latest Associated Press Football Poll, released Tuesday.
Banks County came within one point of winning subregion 8A-AA, but was able to salvage second place. Dawson County started the season 1-6, but closed with two straight 8A-AA wins to grab third place in the subregion.
HOMER - After losing a game to Fannin County on Oct. 22, the Leopards of Banks County High went into last Friday's match up with East Hall with more than a chip on their shoulder.
With one Friday night remaining in the regular season, region championships and playoff berths are still up for grabs all over Northeast Georgia. Here's a look at this week's top games:
While most area schools have at least one more game to play, Lakeview Academy - a fifth-year program playing a non-region schedule - concluded its season Friday with a 23-12 win over Towns County.
On Senior Night, the Lakeview Academy Lions put the finishing touches on the best season yet in the program's three-year history.
Cole Segraves went 16-of-23 passing for 130 yards and a touchdown to lead White County to a 21-13 win over Franklin County on Friday at Ed Bryant Stadium in Carnesville.
The Johnson High football team committed 16 penalties Friday night on the way to being shutout by Monroe Area 41-0 at Hurricanes Stadium in Monroe.
CONYERS - The Flowery Branch Falcons won their ninth straight game Friday night, beating Salem 40-14.
HOMER - Dylan Lackey made sure Banks County didn't head into the Region 8-AA play-in game with back-to-back losses.
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