Region 6-AAAAA is taking the week off, so we’ll have to wait until next weekend for that huge Tucker-Stephenson game, but there are some important games on the Class AAAAA schedule. Regions 1, 4 and 7 begin league play this week, meaning the games that really count will be under way in all eight regions. Here’s a look at five of the top games this week:
*Bainbridge at Thomas County Central: The two teams expected to challenge for the Region 1-AAAAA championship will settle the matter in the first weekend of region play, although the winner still has a date with unbeaten but untested Lee County down the road. Both teams have one loss overall but played difficult non-region schedules.
*Ware County at Glynn Academy: Glynn Academy’s loss to Richmond Hill last week took a bit of the shine off this matchup, but it is still an important step on the road to the 3-AAAAA title for preseason favorite Ware County. A victory by Ware likely sets up a winner-take-all showdown when the Gators travel to Richmond Hill on Oct. 19.
*North Paulding at South Paulding: North Paulding (4-1) is in third place in Region 5-AAAAA, a half-game ahead of Rome. South Paulding, which gave a good effort against ninth-ranked Allatoona last week, is tied with Hiram for fourth place at 2-2. A loss against North Paulding would mean the Spartans most likely must beat Hiram on Oct. 19 to have any shot at the postseason.
*Sequoyah at Creekview: The winner of this game almost certainly will take the title in 7-AAAAA Division A, which brings with it a spot in the region championship game and an automatic berth in the state playoffs. Creekview is 3-1 heading into the subregion opener, while Sequoyah is 2-2. The other four teams in the subregion are a combined 0-16.
*Kell at Riverwood: Riverwood is 5-0 for the first time since 1986 but untested at this point. There is no bigger test in 7-AAAAA than Kell, and those two teams meet on Friday in a game that might decide the Division B title. The winner of this game could essentially wrap things up with a victory later against Pope, which is expected to be a factor in the subregion, as well.