October has been a good month to be a member of the North Hall football team.
After a bye week to start the month out, the Trojans have rolled through three straight opponents, culminating in their 76-0 rout of East Hall Friday night. Over that period, North Hall beat opponents by a combined 208-13, blowing out Fannin County and Lumpkin County before defeating the Vikings.
“I think we’ve just gotten back to focusing on ourselves and doing the little things,” North Hall head coach David Bishop said of the team’s recent dominance. “I tell people all the time, it’s a very mature team. They come out with the right attitude about how to do business. And they do that at practice and they do that in the game. It’s just been a joy to be able to coach these guys.”
The Trojans were carried by their high-powered rushing offense Friday night, an attack which no one has managed to find an answer to since the team’s lone loss against Greater Atlanta Christian at the end of September. North Hall running backs JT Fair and Daniel Jackson once again led the way, combining for 158 yards and scoring four touchdowns on just six carries against East Hall. The pair added 84 yards and two scores through the air, and Jackson scored twice on special teams.
The dynamic duo had already scored 12 touchdowns in their previous two games and have been a major factor in the program’s recent hot streak.
“Really just every back that we have here at North Hall just gives it everything they have,” Jackson said. “That’s what opens it up for other people. We’ve just really got to give all the credit to our offensive line though and the way they’ve stepped up so far. We’ve just got to continue that for the rest of the season.”
And as impressive as the offensive numbers have been, North Hall’s defensive efforts have been equally as effective.
The Trojans pitched their second straight shutout against East Hall, and they’ve only allowed one team to top 20 points against them all season.
“That’s one thing we really focused on as a staff here, is just trying to simplify a lot of what we do on defense,” Bishop said. “I think our starting defense has only given up 54 points all year. It’s flashy on offense, but defense doesn’t get a whole lot (of credit), but a lot of those kids are both sides of the ball, so one way or the other, they’re getting it.”
The win sets North Hall up with a huge regular season finale against Dawson County with plenty of playoff seeding implications. Both teams come into the contest with 4-1 region records, and the winner of the game will enter the postseason as the second-seeded team out of Region 7-3A.
“Dawson County is a quality opponent,” Bishop said. “They’re coached well. They’re also a very old and veteran team. There’s a lot of guys that have been starting for two and three years. They’re big and physical and very disciplined in what they do. It’s going to be an interesting night for sure.”
The Tigers have been on a hot streak of their own, taking out all but two opponents by multiple scores with their only loss coming on the road against No. 6 Greater Atlanta Christian.
But with the way North Hall has been gelling in all three facets of the game of late, neither Bishop nor Jackson expressed any worry regarding the task at hand.
“We’ve got all the confidence in the world right now,” Jackson said. “We just know we’ve got to have another great week at practice, take it one week at a time. We know it’s going to be a good game, and we’re ready for it.”