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GAMES TO WATCH: WEEK NINE

Dutchtown at Stockbridge

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. at Tiger Stadium, in McDonough.

Records, rankings: Dutchtown is unranked and 5-2; Stockbridge is ranked No. 8 and is 5-1.

Last meeting: Stockbridge won 28-14 in 2011.

Noteworthy: Stockbridge has one of the stingiest defenses in the Southern Crescent, allowing just 9.2 points a game in its last five contests. Dutchtown has perhaps the most potent offensive player in Donovahn Jones in the area. The Tigers’ last time out was perhaps their most dominating performance yet, holding an Eagle’s Landing offense that has been scoring at will all season to just seven points in a 31-7 victory two weeks ago. Meanwhile, Jones broke several school records, passing for 398 yards and six touchdowns in a 52-22 romp against that same Eagle’s Landing squad. With a win, Stockbridge can further cement itself atop the region standings.

Lovejoy at Luella

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m., at Luella High Stadium, in Locust Grove.

Records, rankings: Lovejoy is ranked No. 9 and is 6-1 overall and 3-0 in Region 2-AAAAAA; Luella is unranked and 1-6 overall and 1-2 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: The Lions were just two points away against Rockdale County from winning its second straight game and building much needed momentum heading into this week’s tussle against Lovejoy. In fact, Luella’s last three losses have come by a combined six points. This game was marked as a potentially formidable midseason challenge for the Wildcats before the Luella losses, and still could be. But coach Al Hughes’ team looks focused, outscoring opponents 179-10 in their last four games. Travis Custis is among the Southern Crescent’s rushing leaders with 1,002 yards and 14 touchdowns.

Morrow at Alcovy

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. at Homer Sharp Stadium in Covington.

Records, rankings: Morrow is unranked, 1-5 overall and 0-2 in Region 2-AAAAAA; Alcovy is unranked, 2-4 overall and 1-2 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: Earlier in the week Morrow Athletic Director and assistant football coach Greg Kirkland said he felt good at the progress his new staff has made in making Morrow a winner again. It hasn’t shown up in wins and losses but Morrow has shown good effort despite the defeats. The Mustangs’ next four opponents have a combined record of 7-16. Alcovy, however, may be one of the better 2-4 teams you’ll see. It’s largest loss was a 12 point setback to Perry in the Tigers’ second game. Morrow wide receiver Sterling Taylor has had several big games for the Mustangs. Fresh off an official visit to Missouri, Taylor will need to stretch the field offensively to give Morrow a shot.

Forest Park vs. Mundy’s Mill

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

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked. Forest Park is 0-6 overall and 0-2 in region 4A-AAAA; Mundy’s Mill is 2-4 overall and 2-0 in the region.

Last meeting: Mundy’s Mill won 42-6 in 2011.

Noteworthy: These two teams were on similar paths when they met up last season. Forest Park came in at 0-7; Mundy’s Mill was 1-6, with little to play for except pride. But Mundy’s Mill’s recent play has proven the difference a year — and running back having a break out year — can make. First year coach Greg Manior and his Tigers have rolled to big wins against Mount Zion and Drew in consecutive weeks to post it’s best ever start in region play. Junior tailback Rodney Smith’s 623 yards and five touchdowns in those two outings is a big reason why. Meanwhile Forest Park is still looking for its first win in the Don Williams era. DeJuan Simms leads Forest Park with 262 yards rushing.

Mount Zion at Union Grove

When, where: Tonight, at 7:30 p.m. at Wolverine Stadium in McDonough.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked. Mount Zion is 0-6 overall and 0-2 in Region 4A-AAAA; Union Grove is 5-1 overall and 2-0 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: Union Grove is perhaps the Southern Crescent’s quietest team. A little wind was seemingly knocked out of the sails of the Wolverines’ 2012 season after their shockingly lopsided 39-0 loss to Whitewater in the season’s third game. But since that loss, Union Grove has outscored its next three opponents 98-13. Running back Derrick Craine’s 147 yards against Forest Park last week pushed his season total to 808 while averaging over 6.5 yards per carry with eight touchdowns to boot. The porous Mount Zion defense may have a hard time containing Craine who also starts at linebacker and handles the Wolverines’ punting duties.

Woodland at Eagle’s Landing

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m., at Eagle’s Landing Stadium in McDonough.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked. Woodland is 2-4 overall and 1-0 in Region 4A-AAAA; Eagle’s Landing is 0-7 overall and 0-2 in the region.

Last meeting: Woodland won 51-0 in 2009.

Noteworthy: Woodland broke its four game winning streak with a mild 23-14 upset over Locust Grove last week and is hoping that the win will provide some confidence. Malcolm Miller starred for the Wolfpack rushing for 136 yards on 23 carries and scoring two touchdowns. With each defense struggle a bit — Eagle’s Landing surrenders over 41 points a game while Woodland has given up 26 per contest — this one may have the makings of a shoot-out.

Spalding vs. Jonesboro

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

Records, rankings: Spalding is unranked, 1-4-1 overall and 0-2 in Region 4B-AAAA; No. 7 Joneboro is 5-1 overall and 1-1 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: Jonesboro used its bye week to prepare itself for the season’s home stretch. The Cardinals will never have to leave Clayton County until playoff time with games against Spalding County, Riverdale and Upson-Lee. Mario Atkinson has settled in well at quarterback with four straight 200-plus yard performances. After a 1-1 start, the Jaguars have lost four straight, including its first two region games. Jonesboro needs a win to keep its hopes of a region title alive.

North Clayton

at Griffin

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

Records, rankings: North Clayton is unranked, 1-6 overall and 1-2 in Region 4B-AAAA; No. 9 Griffin is 5-1 overall and 2-0 in region 4B-AAAA.

Last meeting: Griffin won 26-14 in 2009.

Noteworthy: North Clayton would love nothing more than to salvage its disappointing season by upsetting ninth-ranked Griffin. And if you believe in separation of degrees comparisons, the Eagles could be competitive. North Clayton was one field goal away from upsetting No. 8 Stockbridge who, by the way, is the only team to hand Griffin a loss this season.

Upson-Lee

vs. Riverdale

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m., at Southern Crescent Stadium in Riverdale.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked. Upson-Lee is 3-3 overall and 1-1 in Region 4B-AAAA; Riverdale is 5-2 overall and 2-1 in region 4B-AAAA.

Last meeting: Riverdale won 20-14 in 1995.

Noteworthy: Even though the Raiders have had two losses — against Dutchtown and Griffin — that they might like to forget, they are still very much in the thick of the race for the 4B-AAAA crown. Riverdale bounced back from the Griffin loss with a defensive effort reminiscent of its first three wins of the season. Senior running back Kamhad Magwood has stepped up as a solid compliment to the shifty Ti’Keem Cooper. Upson-Lee’s fleet footed quarterback Corey Moss will look to get untracked this week after only gaining 65 yards on 17 carries against in the Knights 19-14 loss to North Clayton last week.

Jackson at

Henry County

When, where: 7:30 p.m., at Warhawk Stadium in McDounough.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked. Jackson is 4-3 overall and 1-2 in region 2-AAA; Henry County is 1-6 overall and 0-3 in the region.

Last meeting: Henry County won 28-7 in 2011.

Noteworthy: Henry County has been unable to capitalize on the good feelings brought about by its 22-20 last-second win September 21 against Luella. The Warhawks have lost three straight since, including being outscored 95-7 in their last two games against Peach County and Central Macon. Even Henry County were to win out against Jackson, Southwest Macon and Pike County, the Warhawks would still finish with their first losing season since 2006. Jackson, has dropped two straight, but were a touchdown and two point conversion away from being tied with top-ranked Peach County late in the fourth quarter before Peach County tacked on two touchdowns in the game’s last two minutes to pull away.

ELCA at Our

Lady of Mercy

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

Records, rankings: ELCA is 5-1 overall, 2-0 in Region 5-A and ranked No. 1; Our Lady of Mercy is unranked, 4-3 overall and 1-2 in the region.

Last meeting: ELCA won 52-7 in 2011.

Noteworthy: ELCA has not trailed in any of its five wins this season, and have scored at least 42 points in its last four games. First year starting quarterback Dalton Etheridge — nor many of the Chargers’ starters — have played in the second half of a game since they traveled to Briarwood and won 32-7 on August 31st. Junior linebacker Josh Shockley is pacing ELCA defensively with 43 tackles. Our Lady of Mercy has lost two straight after winning four of its first five.

Holy Innocents

at Strong Rock

When, where: Tonight, 7:30 p.m., at Strong Rock Christian School Stadium in Locust Grove.

Records, rankings: Both teams are unranked. Holy Innocents is 4-3 overall and 2-1 in Region 5-A; Strong Rock is 3-3 overall and 0-2 in the region.

Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.

Noteworthy: After a promising 3-1 non-region start, Strong Rock is reeling from two straight lopsided defeats, including a 49-0 shelling last week at the hands of Landmark Christian. Jordan Spruill has been a bright spot. Spruill accumulated 143 yards of total offense and two touchdowns two weeks ago against Pace Academy.