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GAMES TO WATCH: Week 8

Running back Malcolm Miller and Woodland get an opportunity for a big Region 4-AAAA win tonight when the Wolfpack face Locust Grove.

Running back Malcolm Miller and Woodland get an opportunity for a big Region 4-AAAA win tonight when the Wolfpack face Locust Grove.

Eagle’s Landing at Dutchtown

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m., at Bulldogs Stadium, in Hampton.

Records, rankings: Unranked Eagle’s Landing is 0-6 overall and 0-1 in Region 4A-AAAA; Unranked Dutchtown is 4-2 overall and 0-1 in the region.

Last meeting: Eagle’s Landing won 30-3 in 2005.

Noteworthy: The sting of defeat will test the mettle of both teams as Eagle’s Landing still searches for its elusive first win — despite explosive offensive output, and a few decently close games. Meanwhile, in its two losses — 42-16 to Griffin and 40-37 at Locust Grove — Dutchtown has been outscored 61-6 in the second halves of both games. The Bulldogs lost a 31-0 lead in the Locust Grove loss. The Golden Eagle’s potent offense featuring the Southern Crescent’s first 1,000 yard rusher this season in Corey Holloway (1,016 yards) may cause the Bulldogs some problems.

Lovejoy vs. Morrow

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m., at Twelve Oaks Stadium in Hampton.

Records, rankings: Lovejoy is 5-1 overall and 2-0 in Region 2-AAAAAA, and ranked No. 9. Morrow 1-4 and 0-1.

Last meeting: Lovejoy won 71-0 in 2011.

Noteworthy: Since their 14-7 loss at Colquitt County on September 7, the Wildcats have been rolling. Coach Al Hughes’ ninth-ranked squad has outscored their last four opponents 172-34. Senior tailback Travis Custis has run for over 840 yards with 10 rushing touchdowns, and Alejandro Bennifield’s passing has helped give Lovejoy’s offense some balance. Morrow, on the other hand, has scored more than six points just once, and that came in its only win — a 12-6 victory against winless Forest Park. Wide receiver Sterling Taylor has been a bright spot for coach Larry Foster in his first season.

Luella at Rockdale

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. at Reid Stadium in Conyers.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked, 1-5 overall and 1-1 in Region 2-AAAAAA.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: Finally, everything went right for the Lions last Friday against Druid Hills. There were highlights all over the field. Quarterback Jared Hendricks threw for two touchdowns. Gabe Smith rushed for a touchdown and returned a fumble for another score. Andrew Roberts set a school record going 7-for-7 on extra point attempts. Tevin Jones had seven tackles, two tackles for loss, a half sack, three pass break-ups and returned a blocked punt for a touchdown. Now the Lions get a Rockdale County team that was shut out for the third time this season. If they win, Luella can start thinking again about the playoffs.

Union Grove vs. Forest Park

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m., Tara Stadium in Jonesboro.

Records, rankings: Union Grove is unranked, 4-1 overall and 1-0 in region 4A-AAAAA; Forest Park is unranked, 0-5 overall and 0-1 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: Union Grove running back Derrick Craine is on pace to rush for over 1,300 yards in the regular season. So far he has 661 yards and seven touchdowns on 106 carries. Last week, he rushed for 103 yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries in the Wolverines’ 21-7 win over Ola. Union Grove is averaging 22.8 points a game in its four wins and has been remarkably consistent, scoring 25, 22, 23 and 21 points. That number could be much higher tonight. Forest Park has allowed 40 or more points three times.

Mount Zion at Ola

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. at Ola High School Stadium in McDonough.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked; Mount Zion is 0-5 overall and 0-1 in Region 4A-AAAAA; Ola is 1-4 overall and 0-1 in the region.

Last meeting: Mount Zion won 35-16 in 2009.

Noteworthy: After a 38-30 win against Eagle’s Landing to open the season, optimism was high for Ola. But then came a seven point loss to Locust Grove, and then three more losses that, with a few different bounces of the ball, could’ve went the other way. The Mustangs are 1-4 but could easily be at least 3-2. They’ll look to take advantage of a reeling Mount Zion squad in order to get win number two. Bulldogs coach Ervin Starr has shaken up his starting line up on both sides of the ball, trying to find the combination that will net him his first win as Mount Zion’s head coach. The Bulldogs have been shut out twice this year and have failed to score more than 13 points in a game.

Locust Grove at Woodland

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. at Woodland High School Stadium in Stockbridge.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked; Locust Grove is 5-1 overall and 1-0 in Region 4A-AAAA; Woodland is 1-4 overall and 0-0 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: Two of Henry County’s newest schools meet for the first time. Locust Grove has already doubled its win total from last season. Few are playing better than Wildcats quarterback Keenan Wise right now. Over his last five games, Wise is 43-of-80 passing (53.8 percent) for 798 yards and eight touchdowns and has rushed for 383 yards and seven touchdowns. But he won’t have wide receiver Justin Drake to throw to; he’s out of the game attending a funeral. Woodland is coming off a stretch of facing opponents with an 18-5 record, which included two ranked teams.

North Clayton at Upson-Lee

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. at Matthews Field in Thomaston.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked. North Clayton is 0-6 overall and 0-1 in Region 4B-AAAA; Upson-Lee is 3-2 overall and 1-0 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: Upson-Lee has rebounded from a slow start and has won its last three games after beginning the season with two losses. The Knights have averaged 35 points per game in its last three wins.

Henry County at Carver-Columbus

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. at Columbus Memorial Stadium in Columbus.

Records, rankings: Henry County is unranked, 1-5 overall and 0-2 in Region 2-AAA; Carver-Columbus is ranked No. 6, is 4-1 overall and 1-0 in Region 2-AAA.

Last meeting: Henry won 23-16 in 2005.

Noteworthy: Carver has had six consecutive season of double digit wins. Carver’s lone loss was at Class AAAAAA Colquitt County.

Mount Vernon at ELCA

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. at Commitment Field in McDonough.

Records, rankings: Mount Vernon is unranked, 2-4 overall and 0-2 in Region 5-A; ELCA is ranked No. 1, 4-1 overall and 1-0 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: This is Mount Vernon’s first season in the Georgia High School Association. Prior to this season, the Atlanta-based school was in the Georgia Independent School Association. In its nine-year history, the Mustangs have only had one winning season.

Strong Rock at Landmark Christian

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m., at Bill Thorn Stadium in Fairburn.

Records, Rankings: Strong Rock is unranked, 3-2 overall and 0-1 in Region 5-A; Landmark Christian is unranked, 4-2 overall and 2-0 in the region.

Last meeting: Landmark Christian won 35-0 in 2011.

Noteworthy: Since opening the season with two consecutive wins, Strong Rock has lost two of its last three games. The Patriots are currently No. 24 in the latest Maxwell Ratings, which will be a part of the GHSA formula in determining the Class A playoff field. Landmark has won its last three games by averaging 40 points per contest.

SOUTHERN CRESCENT TOP 5

Each week throughout the season, the Clayton News Daily/Henry Daily Herald ranks the top five teams in Clayton and Henry counties.

1. Lovejoy (5-1)

The Wildcats recorded their first shutout of the season in a 41-0 win over Rockdale last week. Last season, the ninth-ranked Wildcats had eight shutouts en route to an appearance in the state title game. A week after getting his first 200-yard rushing game of the season, standout senior running back Travis Custis had a four-touchdown performance against Rockdale in the Region 2-AAAAAA contest. For his effort, Custis was named the Atlanta Touchdown Club Back of the Week.

2 ELCA (4-1)

The Chargers continue to maintain the top spot in the weekly Associated Press Class A poll. Last week, ELCA was off as it prepares to host Mount Vernon Presbyterian in a Region 5-A contest. The Chargers have won 20 straight region games dating back to 2009. It last loss in the region was to Holy Innocents’ on Sept. 9 at home.

3. Stockbridge (5-1)

It was evident that the Tigers put its shocking win over Griffin to rest in last week’s win over Eagle’s Landing. Stockbridge is the first team this season to hold Eagle’s Landing to under 20 points. The Tigers are off this week as they prepare for an Oct. 19 showdown with Dutchtown at home. Since a shutout loss to M.L. King to start the season, Stockbridge has averaged 22 points in winning its last five games.

4. Jonesboro (5-1)

After a sluggish first half start, the Cardinals were finally able to put winless North Clayton away in the second half of a 26-8 win. Jonesboro is off this week before hosting Spalding at Tara Stadium on Oct. 19. Junior quarterback Mario Atkinson continues to be impressive as he passed for over 200 yards for the third time this season.

5. Drew (4-1)

The Titans enjoyed its best offensive outputs in school history in a win over Forest Park. Drew’s offense amassed 617 yards total yards, 403 coming on the ground in the subregion win over Forest Park. It marked the first time that Drew had beaten a Clayton County team in its three-year varsity history.