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PAGLIA: Southern Crescent football fades to gray

Brian Paglia, bpaglia@henryherald.com

Brian Paglia, bpaglia@henryherald.com

I thought I had seen the future.

Correction: I thought I had seen two futures.

There were futures full of playoff dreams and upset victories. Field goal kicks slipping just inside the goal post for the win. Sure tackles and one-handed diving catches. “How’s our side of the playoff bracket look, coach?”

Then there were the futures full of frustration and tumult. Plagues of penalties. Rash of interceptions. Devastating injuries. Players looking for rides to watch local playoff games.

That’s where I was in mid-June. Ater spring practices and the 7-on-7 tournament circuit was complete, I asked two questions — How would a team’s regular season look if everything goes right? How would it look if everything goes wrong? — and answered them.

Now, after a whirlwind of a regular season, I had to look back and see where reality fit in.

So, here’s a look at my best- and worst-case scenarios for each local team made in June and how the regular season actually finished:

Drew

Best: 10-0

Worst: 6-4

Final: 6-4. Losses to Mundy’s Mill (32-31) and Union Grove (34-33) were devastating.

Dutchtown

Best: 10-0

Worst: 5-5

Final: 6-4. Locust Grove loss (40-37) was the surprise on the schedule.

Eagle’s Landing

Best: 4-6

Worst: 0-10

Final: 1-9. Just needed a respectable defense to match impressive offense.

ELCA

Best: 10-0

Worst: 7-3

Final: 9-1. That Washington County loss (24-19) looks even better now.

Forest Park

Best: 3-7

Worst: 0-10

Final: 0-10. Panthers struggled picking up first-year coach Don Williams’ West Coast offense.

Henry County

Best: 7-3

Worst: 3-7

Final: 1-9. Loss of senior talent was too much to overcome.

Jonesboro

Best: 9-1

Worst: 7-3

Final: 9-1. But I didn’t see Mario Atkinson emerging at quarterback.

Locust Grove

Best: 5-5

Worst: 1-9

Final: 6-4. One of the few overachieving teams.

Lovejoy

Best: 10-0

Worst: 7-3

Final: 9-1. That Colquitt County loss will only help the Wildcats.

Luella

Best: 8-2

Worst: 5-5

Final: 2-8. Lions were just six points away from going 5-5.

Morrow

Best: 3-7

Worst: 0-10

Final: 1-9. First-year coach Leroy Foster had no spring practice to get team ready.

Mount Zion

Best: 3-7

Worst: 0-10

Final: 1-9. Tough first year for new coach Ervin Starr.

Mundy’s Mill

Best: 4-6

Worst: 0-10

Final: 4-6. But I didn’t see Rodney Smith’s breakout season coming.

North Clayton

Best: 7-3

Worst: 3-7

Final: 2-8. Eagles were 12 points away from going 5-5.

Ola

Best: 6-4

Worst: 1-9

Final: 3-7. Mustangs were two touchdowns away from going 5-5.

Stockbridge

Best: 8-2

Worst: 5-5

Final: 9-1. But I didn’t see a first-ever region title.

Strong Rock

Best: 4-6

Worst: 0-10

Final: 4-6. Fast start (3-1) and tough finish (1-5).

Riverdale

Best: 7-3

Worst: 2-8

Final: 7-3. Raiders weathered mid-season QB change and all.

Union Grove

Best: 9-1

Worst: 5-5

Final: 9-1. But I didn’t see Derrick Craine rushing for over 1,700 yards.

Woodland

Best: 5-5

Worst: 2-8

Final: 2-8. Wolfpack had a tough schedule; opponents’ record was 61-39.

Brian Paglia covers sports for the Clayton News Daily and Henry Daily Herald newspapers. He can be reached at bpaglia@henryherald.com. On Twitter? Follow him @BrianPaglia.

Comments

tiredeyes 1 year, 5 months ago

Did Riverdale not earn some mention in this article? I know you guys were TOO BUSY to mention anything about their region playoff win over Dutchtown in the newspaper but you could at least mention them in this article but come on give them a little love.

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