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HS football previews: North Hall, West Hall, Banks County and White County fight for playoff spots
Buford and Jefferson have region titles on the line
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Read a full preview of The Times' Game of the Week, Flowery Branch at Gainesville, here

All area high school football games tonight: 

Lakeview Academy vs. Commerce

Riverside Military vs. Social Circle

North Hall at White County

East Hall at Banks County

Chestatee vs. Monroe Area

West Hall at Lumpkin County

Johnson vs. Dawson County

Buford vs. Stephens County

Jefferson vs. Hart County

Jackson County at Morgan County

Habersham Central at Chattahoochee

Lakeview Academy vs. Commerce

Records: Lakeview Academy (2-7, 1-6 8-A), Commerce (6-3, 5-2)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Gainesville

Last year: Commerce won 55-28

Game notes: Lakeview looks to match last season’s win total, while Commerce preps for another deep playoff run. ... If Commerce wins tonight, their seven wins this season will match Lakeview’s total over the past three seasons.

Riverside Military vs. Social Circle

Records: Riverside Military (1-8, 0-5 8-AA), Social Circle (3-6, 1-4)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Maginnis Field, Gainesville

Last year: Riverside Military won 34-13

Game notes: Riverside Military’s defense has been stellar, but the Eagles need help on offense. The Eagles are averaging 7.1 points per game despite the defense forcing 3 to 4 turnovers on most nights. ... Riverside senior running back Kaseem Dukes will be looking to add to his 112 carries for 641 yards and two touchdowns on Senior Night.

North Hall at White County

Records: North Hall (5-4, 4-2 8-AAAA), White County (3-6, 3-3)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: White County Stadium, Cleveland

Last year: White County won 40-14

Game notes: If North Hall wins tonight, it will lock up the No. 3 seed for the playoffs. If they lose by less than 12 points, they will earn the No. 4 spot. ... If White County wins by more than 11 points, it will result in a three-way tie between these two teams along with North Oconee. A coin flip would decide which two teams, out of the three, will represent the region in the playoffs. ... North Hall junior running back Kyle Bacus has 118 carries for 706 yards and seven touchdowns. However, Bacus was limited to just two carries for 3 yards last week against Chestatee, a move presumably made to keep him fresh for this game. ... White County is riding a two-game win streak, while North Hall has won three straight.

East Hall at Banks County

Records: East Hall (5-4, 4-1 7-AAA), Banks County (5-4, 2-3)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Leopard Stadium, Homer

Last year: East Hall won 35-21

Game notes: East Hall’s position in the playoffs is secure. The Vikings will be the No. 2 seed regardless of the result tonight. ... East Hall has earned the right to host a playoff game for the first time in 15 years. ... Banks County is still mathematically in contention, but will need help from other region results for the Leopards to make the playoffs after two straight losses. ... Banks County senior running back Trevae Cain will start Senior Night already having amassed 1,146 rushing yards and 18 total touchdowns (16 rushes) this season. ... East Hall has won four straight games since starting the season 1-4.

Chestatee vs. Monroe Area

Records: Chestatee (0-9, 0-6 8-AAAA), Monroe Area (2-7, 1-5)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Chestatee Stadium, Gainesville

Last year: Monroe Area won 41-28

Game notes: Chestatee is trying to avoid going winless for only the second time in school history. The War Eagles didn’t win a game in 2003 (their second year as a program). ... Monroe Area defeated Chestatee last season to avoid going winless, and the War Eagle will try to return the favor tonight.

West Hall at Lumpkin County

Records: West Hall (4-5, 2-3 7-AAA), Lumpkin County (2-7, 0-5)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: The Burial Grounds, Dahlonega

Last year: West Hall won 35-0

Game notes: West Hall must win tonight to have any chance of making the playoffs. Still, considering how their season started (2-5), it is quite a feat for them to even be in that position. ... If West Hall wins and either East Hall wins at Banks County or Franklin County beats (or loses by less than four) to Fannin County, the Spartans will make their third straight trip to the postseason.

Johnson vs. Dawson County

Records: Johnson (2-7), Dawson County (6-3, 5-1 7-AAA)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Billy Ellis Memorial Stadium, Gainesville

Last year: Dawson County won 28-0

Game notes: Dawson County has already clinched the Region 7-AAA Championship (their first region championship in school history). ... In his first year on the job, Coach Sid Maxwell took the Tigers from worst (2-8, 1-5 last year) to first. ... Dawson County senior running back Hunter Mitchell has carried the load with 106 carries for 726 yards and five touchdowns, while sophomore quarterback Coey Watson has accounted for 1,719 offensive yards (1,404 passing, 315 rushing) and 19 total touchdowns.

Buford vs. Stephens County

Records: Buford (8-1, 6-0 8-AAAA), Stephens County (8-1, 6-0)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Tom Riden Stadium, Buford

Last year: Buford won 56-0

Game notes: Buford hasn’t been tested in the region all season, outscoring region opponents 260-18, but a loss to Stephens County will mean the Wolves will lose out on a region championship for the first time since having to forfeit two region games in 2012. ... Only twice has Buford not won a region championship since 2001 (2009, 2012). ... Stephens County’s last region championship came in 2007. ... Buford’s running back trio of Anthony Grant (491 yards, eight touchdowns), Christian Turner (412 yards, seven touchdowns) and Martin Mangram (403 yards, 16 touchdowns) leads a Wolves offense that’s scoring 42 points a game. ,,, Buford junior quarterback Mic Roof is completing passes at a 72 percent clip (1,054 yards, 10 touchdowns) and has provided some balance to an otherwise run-heavy offense.

Jefferson vs. Hart County

Records: Jefferson (8-1, 4-1 8-AAA), Hart County (7-2, 4-1)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Memorial Stadium, Jefferson

Last year: Jefferson won 21-14

Game notes: Jefferson still has a shot at the region championship despite their double overtime loss at Oconee County. The Dragons will have to win tonight and hope for Elbert County to win at Oconee County for that to happen. ... If Jefferson wins and Elbert County losses, then the Dragons are the No. 2 seed. ... If Jefferson loses, a team that was 8-0 and ranked No. 3 in Class AAA just two weeks ago will not host a playoff game and could even finish as low as the No. 4 seed. ... Jefferson sophomore running back Colby Wood scored all five of Jefferson’s touchdowns last week and has 1,711 rushing yards and 27 total touchdowns (26 rush) on the season.

Jackson County at Morgan County

Records: Jackson County (4-5, 1-4 8-AAA), Morgan County (3-6, 1-4)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: Bill Corey Stadium, Madison

Last year: Morgan County won 45-42

Game notes: Jackson County won their first region game two weeks ago, a 69-7 drubbing of East Jackson. ... The Panthers come off a bye to end their season against a Morgan County team whose only region win was also at the expense East Jackson.

Habersham Central at Chattahoochee

Records: Habersham Central (1-8, 1-7 6-AAAAAA), Chattahoochee (0-9, 0-8)

When: 7:30 tonight

Where: The Arena, Alpharetta

Last year: Chattahoochee won 35-28

Game notes: Habersham Central’s senior class had won a total of two games entering the season. With a win tonight, the Raiders will send their seniors off having doubled their win total from the previous three seasons. ... Junior running back Michael Babers has been a bright spot for Habersham Central rushing for 1,124 yards and 18 total touchdowns. Babers had 16 carries for 151 yards and two touchdowns against Chattahoochee last season.

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