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HS Football Previews: Gainesville hosts Apalachee, West Hall looks to rebound vs. North Oconee
East Hall attempts to grab first win at Jackson County, while Johnson travels to Pickens
Lakeview Academy's Joe Gradidge breaks tackles as he carries the ball for the Lions Sept. 11 during a Region 8-A game at Jock Horner Field.

Read a preview of The Times' Game of the Week, North Hall vs. Carrollton, here:

Gainesville vs. Apalachee

Records: Gainesville (1-1, 1-0 8-AAAAA), Apalachee (0-3, 0-2 8-AAAAA)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Bobby Gruhn Field, Gainesville

Last year: Gainesville won 48-7

Game notes: Gainesville High rebounded well from their opening loss with an impressive 40-26 win last week over Winder-Barrow. ... First-year quarterback Messiah Dorsey had his breaking out party last week with 130 passing yards, 84 rushing yards and five total touchdowns in leading his team to victory. ... Apalachee has scored 12 points this season. They have allowed 129. ... Gainesville High senior Chris Byrd had 13 tackles last week. ... Gainesville is 3-0 in the all-time series against Apalachee.

Riverside Military vs. Rabun County

Records: Riverside Military (0-2), Rabun County (3-1)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Maginnis Field, Gainesville

Last year: Rabun County won 24-3

Game notes: Riverside Military lost 42-3 to Hapeville Charter last week. ... Riverside Military’s offense has scored a total of three points this season and has averaged 161 yards per game. ... The Eagles’ defense forced five turnovers in last week’s loss. ... Rabun County has won three straight games, including a 21-0 shutout victory over Jackson County last week. ... Riverside Military has played four quarterbacks this season. ... Riverside Military is 2-5 in the all-time series against Rabun County.

East Hall at Jackson County

Records: East Hall (0-2), Jackson County (2-1)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Panther Stadium, Jefferson

Last year: Jackson County won 31-6

Game notes: East Hall had the week off after losing to Pickens. ... Jackson County is coming off a 21-0 shutout loss to Rabun County last week after starting the season 2-0. ... The Jackson County defense held Rabun County to 246 yards of total offense last week. ... East Hall senior running back Jiel Vargas had two rushing touchdowns against Pickens, while quarterback Austin Parker had two passing touchdowns (95 and 65 yards) both to Markese Jackson. ... East Hall is 6-3 in the all-time series against Jackson County.

Johnson at Pickens

Records: Johnson (1-3), Pickens (2-0)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Jasper

Last year: Johnson won 49-6

Game notes: After a win in their opener, Johnson has lost three straight games, including a 38-19 loss to Lumpkin County last week. ... Johnson freshman quarterback Sam Corbett had 43 passing yards, 117 rushing yards and a touchdown against Lumpkin County. ... Johnson running back Cody Long had 43 rushing yards and a touchdown last week in the loss. ... The Knights will look toward senior Orion Pittman, who was named to The Times’ Elite 11, to help them break out of their slump tonight. ... Pickens defeated East Hall 52-28 two weeks ago. ... Johnson is 6-7 in the all-time series against Pickens.

West Hall vs. North Oconee

Records: West Hall (2-1), North Oconee (0-2)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: West Hall Stadium, Oakwood

Last year: North Oconee won 28-10

Game notes: West Hall will look to rebound from last week’s upset loss to North Hall. ... West Hall committed three turnovers last week, including two muffed punts. ... The Spartans’ run game will need to get back on track tonight against North Oconee after North Hall held them to only four rushing yards for the entire game. ... West Hall senior running back Kwon Williams has 16 carries for 75 yards and three touchdowns this season. ... North Oconee has allowed an average of 47 points per game to their opponents this season. ... North Oconee beat West Hall last year in the only other game the two have played against each other.

North Hall vs. Carrollton

Records: North Hall (1-1), Carrollton (0-3)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: The Brickyard, Gainesville

Last year: Carrollton won 46-10

Game notes: North Hall is looking to build off its win against West Hall 24-10 last week. ... North Hall junior running back Kyle Bacus had 129 rushing yards and three touchdowns last week. ... Carrollton has four running backs with over 100 yards on the season. Senior Jarvis Terrell is averaging 8.6 yards per carry and leads Carrollton with 198 rushing yards. ... The North Hall offensive line will have to deal with the 6-foot-6-inch, 255-pound Carrollton defense end and Louisville commit Michael Boykin. ... Carrollton has committed eight turnovers this season. ... North Hall is 0-2 against Carrollton.

Flowery Branch at Heritage

Records: Flowery Branch (1-2, 0-2 8-AAAAA), Heritage (0-3, 0-2 8-AAAAA)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Evans Memorial Stadium, Conyers

Last year: Heritage won 35-16

Game notes: Flowery Branch has to regroup after a tough 3-0 loss to Lanier last week. ... The Falcons finished the game with 116 yards of offense. ... Flowery Branch running back Trey Wilcoxson had 12 carries for 53 yards in the first half in the loss to the Longhorns. ... Heritage has lost its last two games by a combined score of 14-79. ... Flowery Branch is 4-1 against Heritage.

Buford at White County

Records: Buford (2-1), White County (0-3)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: White County Stadium, Cleveland

Last year: Buford won 42-10

Game notes: Buford looks to get back on track following their first loss in 42 games against McEachern 37-14 two weeks ago. ... White County lost last week on a last second field goal to Pace Academy. ... Tonight will be the season debut for Buford’s defensive tackle Shug Frazier. ... Buford senior Martin Mangram leads the team with five rushing touchdowns. ... White County running back Kaleb Crane had 23 carries for 141 yards and two touchdowns last week, while senior Adam Johnson had two interceptions on defense. ... Buford is 3-0 in the all-time series against White County. ... This will be the first region game for both teams. ... Both Buford and White County are off next week.

Banks County vs. North Cobb Christian

Records: Banks County (2-1), North Cobb Christian (2-1)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Acworth

Last year: Banks County won 24-8

Game notes: Banks County is riding high after two straight wins. The Leopards will attempt to keep that momentum rolling as they close out their non-region schedule tonight. ... Banks County senior Trevae Cain had 12 carries for 134 yards and two touchdowns in last week’s 41-14 win over East Jackson. ... Banks County senior wide reciever Zezmon Steeple has 13 catches for 279 yards and four touchdowns this season, and quarterback Griffin Goodwin has thrown for 465 yards and five touchdowns with a 69 percent completion percentage. ... Banks County has won the only game that the two teams have played against each other.

Lumpkin County vs. Our Lady of Mercy

Records: Lumpkin County (1-2), Our Lady of Mercy (1-2)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: The Burial Grounds, Dahlonega

Last year: Our Lady of Mercy won 42-35

Game notes: Lumpkin County won their first game of the season last week 38-19 against Johnson. ... Coach Ty Maxwell will want the Indians to finish the non-region schedule strong, as Region 7-AAA play begins next week. ... Lumpkin County junior Zach Matthews has 53 carries for 393 yards and four touchdowns on the season. ... Lumpkin County sophomore Chandler Woodham is starting to get comfortable at the quarterback position, meaning The Times’ Elite 11 selection Zach Matthews can focus more on his strong suit of running with the football. ... Lumpkin County has won the only game that the two teams have played against each other.

Habersham Central at West Forsyth

Records: Habersham Central (0-3, 0-2 6-AAAAAA), West Forsyth (1-2, 1-1 6-AAAAAA)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Wolverine Stadium, Cumming

Last year: West Forsyth won 56-35

Game notes: Habersham Central is still looking for its first win under new head coach Benji Harrison. ... The Raiders lost 55-35 to South Forsyth last week. ... Habersham Central’s defense is giving up 50.3 points per game. ... Habersham Central junior running back Michael Babers had 16 carries for 185 yards and three touchdowns last week. He is averaging 8.7 yards per carry on the season. ... West Forsyth got their first win of the season against Chattahoochee 45-27 last week. ... Habersham Central is 0-1 against West Forsyth.

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