East Paulding 25, Allatoona 7

East Paulding’s explosive running game turned out to be a little better than Allatoona’s.

Kamani Thomas and Kyler Neal combined for 242 yards and three touchdowns rushing as the Raiders beat Allatoona 25-7 to claim the Region 5-AAAAA championship in a battle of unbeaten teams Friday at East Paulding’s Boneyard.

East Paulding completed its second 10-0 regular season in school history and earned the region’s No. 1 seed for the playoffs, which begin next weekend. East Paulding will host Clarke Central, the fourth-place team from Region 8-AAAAA. Allatoona (9-1, 9-1), which lost a regular-season game for the first time since 2010, will host Heritage-Conyers in the first round.

The two running-based teams entered the highly anticipated regular-season finale ranked in the top 10 in Class AAAAA in scoring offense and scoring defense, but it was East Paulding that got the better of it on both sides of the ball.

Thomas, who has rushed for more than 1,500 yards this season, ran for 129 yards on 22 carries. He gave the Raiders the lead for good with a 17-yard touchdown run with 1:04 to play in the first quarter on the Raiders’ first possession.

Neal ran 12 times for 113 yards, with a 48-yard touchdown run in the second quarter and a 10-yarder in the third that made it 20-0.

Quarterback Mitchell Webb added 54 yards on eight carries as the Raiders outgained Allatoona 301-54 on the ground.

“We knew it was going to be a physical game,” Webb said. “We just wanted to establish the running game and dominate them. And we’ve had a great defense all year long. It’s always been our backbone, having a strong, sturdy defense.”

Allatoona’s two 1,000-yard rushers were limited to 72 yards on 24 carries. Sophomore Josh Bettistea led the way with 46 yards on 11 carries, while T.J. Herron had 26 yards on 13 carries. The Buccaneers lost 18 yards rushing on four sacks.

The Buccaneers’ struggles on the ground forced them to turn to quarterback Jeremy Uzee more than usual. He completed 16 of 23 passes for 158 yards, although much of it came late when the game was no longer in doubt. His 15-yard touchdown pass to Clarence Soleberry with 3:33 remaining in the goal spoiled the shutout.

“It’s amazing,” Webb said of the region title. “It’s something I’ve been waiting for my whole life. It’s something I’ve always wanted.”

Allatoona – 0-0-0-7 – 7

East Paulding – 7-6-7-5 – 25

E – Kamani Thomas 17 run (Miles Hemphill kick)

E – Kyler Neal 48 run (kick failed)

E – Neal 10 run (Hemphill kick)

E – Hemphill 37 field goal

E – Safety (ball snapped out of end zone on punt)

A – Clarence Soleberry 15 pass from Jeremy Uzee (Nate Shaw kick)

33 comments Add your comment

THE "CANNON RULES"!!

November 9th, 2012
10:41 pm

OH YES THEY CAN!! HOW’D THEY DO THAT???

EAST PAULDING 25 / ALLATOONA 7!!

It was EAST ALL NIGHT LONG…ALLATOONA had NO answer for the EAST Offense and the EAST “D” played GREAT. ALLATOONA got their TD with 3:32 left in the 4th quarter and EAST was playing many J.V. guys! Terrific game tonight for EAST, the only negative was a missed Extra Point & a missed FIeld Goal. A TD was called back due to a penalty or the score would have been 32 / 7.

Next Friday it’s CLARKE CENTRAL in “THE BONEYARD”!

TICK…TICK…TICK…BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!!!
GO RAIDERS!!!
2012 REGION 5 AAAAA CHAMPIONS!…ON TO THE DOME!!!!

RAIDER FAN

November 9th, 2012
11:01 pm

Well to me it looked like the toona fans were surrendering before kickoff with all those white flags they were waving. Now let’s see if those toona fans who were doing all that smack talking will be back and show some class towards the UNDEFEATED RAIDERS. Then the clean up of all that smoked toona off the field needs to be done before Clarke Central comes to the “Boneyard” in the first round of the playoffs. Congrats. Raiders on the region 5AAAAA title.

FridayNightLightsFan

November 9th, 2012
11:10 pm

To Tech82 and all the Allatoona fans. Great support!!! You filled the visitor side. Best of luck to us both in the playoffs…

Raider fan.

November 10th, 2012
12:34 am

Congrats to the Raiders for a great win tonight you deserve it.

Coach Goddard, I have a lot of respect for you. You came into this with a lot to prove. Job well done sir. You’re a good man, and you have been a great change to this program and I’m thankful you’re here. Any pouters still out there need to suck it up and get behind this program and show these boys and coaches the support they’ve earned!

Long Time Raider

November 10th, 2012
6:06 am

Great job East! Now let’s go make some noise in the playoffs. If the kind folks at the AJC would put the correct bracket in for the AAAAA playoffs, it would be very much appreciated. We sure don’t need to see AAAAAA twice.

FridayNightLightsFan

November 10th, 2012
6:20 am

bucfan

November 10th, 2012
7:41 am

Hey great job Raiders, you guys kicked our butts where it counts themost in the trenches. I’m very impressed swith your team, especially Thomas and Webb i expect both those boys will be playing on Saturdays. Cannon good call my friend, you guys have a damn good team and i expect to see them in the Dome. AS for my Bucs, we will regroup and go beat Heritage-Conyers next Friday night. We are a program on the rise, you have not heard the last of my Allatoona Buccaneers, but we need to get in that WEIGHT ROOM, your kids were alot bigger and stronger than we were! Anyways, congrats to all you Raider fans, you have a very good team and they played with class and discipline which i love to see!

Toonaville

November 10th, 2012
8:00 am

Congrats to East, we got our tails whipped last night. You guys have a good playoff run,and we will rebound. New season.

All I have to say is..............

November 10th, 2012
8:15 am

Congratulations to ALL OF RAIDERS. Coach Goddard came into a let’s say less than ideal climate. Man, has he proved EVERYONE wrong. Coach G and his assistant coaches have done an outstanding job. What can I can about our kids other than they work hard, fight hard, and play hard. So very proud.

Now, let’s keep it going all the way to the dome.

THE "CANNON RULES"!!

November 10th, 2012
8:35 am

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE EAST PAULDING RAIDERS!!!

UNDEFEATED SEASON!!! REGION 5 AAAAA CHAMPIONS!!!

ALLATOONA, who had jumped from AAA last year to AAAAA this year, came into “THE BONEYARD” at 9 / 0 last night. This was a game we had all been waiting on pretty much from the 1st game this season. The ALLATOONA fans FILLED the visitor’s side and spilled over with folks standing on the fences. GOOD JOB “TOONA” fans that’s how you show the kid’s you appreciate their hard work…

Facing “TOONA” was the UNDEFEATED EAST PAULDING RAIDERS also at 9 / 0…this game was for all the marbles! The 2012 REGION 5 AAAAA CHAMPIONSHIP! & the #1 SEED in the playoffs!

With FOX 5 “HIGH FIVE” & Bill Hartman in the house along with COMCAST XFINITY doing a tape delay that will be available “on demand” the excitement level was over the top!!! EAST won the toss and deferred to the 2nd half…the ball was set, the CANNON fired it’s first shot of the night and BOOOOOM!!!! it was ON!!!!

EAST scored first to go up 7 / 0 then added a 2nd TD but “Mr. Automatic” actually missed the extra point! Everyone was going “HUH”!!! That just doesn’t happen! Score was 13 / 0 and with the “D” stepping up ALL NIGHT, ALLATOONA couldn’t score…”TOONA” made several long clock eating drives but couldn’t finish until the 3:35 mark of the 4th quarter when they threw a pass into the corner of the endzone for their only score of the night!

EAST had a TD called back due to a block in the back (it was a good call) and a missed FG or the score could have been 35+ but at the end of the night as the CANNON fired to signal the victory, the COACH got doused with the water cooler and EAST had it’s 2nd REGION CHAMPIONSHIP in school history.

EAST PAULDING RAIDERS 25 / ALLATOONA 7!!!

EAST gets CLARKE CENTRAL next week in “THE BONEYARD” and ALLATOONA has HERITAGE / CONYERS coming to them….REGROUP “TOONA” and take care of business next week!!!

TICK…TICK…TICK…BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!!!
GO RAIDERS!!!
2012 REGION 5 AAAAA CHAMPIONS!…ON TO THE DOME!!!!

G-dub

November 10th, 2012
9:24 am

Great job East. @Cannon…2012 Region 5 AAAAA Champs. Congratulations

RAIDER FAN

November 10th, 2012
9:48 am

Thanks toona fans. Nothing for you to hold your heads down about last night. I was truely surprised that the game went the way it did, I fully expected it to be a lot closer than it was. Congrats to Allatoona for a great regular season and hopefully the Raiders , Bucs, Rome and N.P. will all go far into the playoffs. I will now be cheering for all the region 5 teams.

COWBELLMAN

November 10th, 2012
9:51 am

I have no voice this morning, so that tells me I was making plenty of noise last night. First off, Congratulations to the 2012 5-AAAAA Region Champions the East Paulding Raiders. You guys have worked your butts off all season to get to this point. Starting next week, a whole new season starts, so get ready because the competition just got a whole lot tougher. Time to turn it up a notch guys. Second, Allatoona you have a great program on the rise. You guys will make some noise in the playoffs I’m sure of that. Toona Fans, you guys keep supporting your boys like you did last night, I promise you it makes a big difference when they are able to see and hear you all in the stands. Last night the Raiders proved all of my points mentioned this week here on the AJC blogs. Mitchell Webb was a key part of the game, and The Defense just shut down the powerful running game of Toona, and yes East dominated up front on both sides of the ball last night. The O-line just wore down the Toona Defense who didn’t seem very well conditioned. The Defensive Line was in the Toona backfield all night long. Great job to all the Raider Fans for rising to the occasion and making sure the Boneyard was loud all night long. I do expect the same next week against Clarke Central, they will be looking to come into the Boneyard to get Revenge from 2010 when East went up to Athens and beat them 20-10, Clarke Central was Undefeated that year and Ranked in the top 5 of the State. So Lets all be ready this coming week.

Gooooo Raiders!!!!!

. RealisticFan

November 10th, 2012
10:04 am

Unbelievably fun game to watch. It definitely lived up to the hype, and what a way for two teams to meet for the very first time. Playing for the “Pirates Booty Chest” between the Bucaneers and Raiders was a great touch. Class shown all the way around, there was only a few penalties called all night and not a single unsportsmanlike or unnecessary roughness call. Allatoona fans showed up big and it was just plain fun.

Now is the time for us to collectively get behind all of our Reg5 playoff teams and go show the rest of the state how tough this region is.

East hosts Clarke Central: This is a rematch of the 2nd game from 2010 in Athens won by EP

Allatoona hosts Heritage-Conyers: I see Allatoona regrouping and winning this.

Rome travels to Gainsville: Red Elephants are losers of two straight and might be prime for a third.

North Paulding travels to Flowery Branch: One of the Branch’s Asst Coaches was North’s first and only Head Coach until this season and that motivation might help the Wolfpack pull off an improbable upset In their first ever playoff appearance.

Reg5AAAAA, DON’T SLEEP ON US

East fan

November 10th, 2012
11:05 am

Allatonas student sectio had absolutely zero class

Toonaville

November 10th, 2012
11:16 am

Region 5 will do well, match ups seem to be in our favor. Good luck to all.

EPDAD

November 10th, 2012
12:13 pm

WOW…….What a Great Game…The Allatoona Fans remind me of the East Fans. Support your team no matter the outcome. Pack the stands and make some noise all night long. The student section was Great on both sides. Nothing wrong with SMACK talking and supporting your team, that’s what makes Friday Nights what they are. Looking forward to coming to the BUCS Stadium next year. My only concern is that the vistor stands are so small there. Hopefully they can expand them for next year. These 2 teams will repersent Region 5 well. I believe Rome & North will go down in the 1st Round. They both have tough draws. Raiders & Bucs should make alot of noise and a strong run for the ” CHAMPIONSHIP ” . GO RAIDERS !!!!!!!

Kick Some Grass

November 10th, 2012
12:30 pm

First of all congratulations to Allatoona for a well played game and packing your side of the Bone Yard, you impressed me. You have a fine progam being built and could see this being a big rivalry game in the future. Congratulations to coach Goddard and his staff for an UNDEFEATED season, region title and a #1 seed in the playoffs. All the hard work has paid off. I really feel we can go deep into playoffs and might even be a team of destiny but I have something I need to get off my chest. I’m not here to be jumped on about what I’m going to say, but here it goes. I’m embarrassed that we have to play in a swamp. It rained Tuesday and players were still slipping all over the place which did help the D on some of Toona’s runs but Thomas was slipping all night on his cuts also. The reason I bring this up now is because I was at stadium earlier in the day and field looked great but came back after warm ups and it looked trashed. We should have known this on the kickoff when Hemphill’s plant foot slid and kickoff looked like a top shot out of a cannon. He slid all night missing his first PAT and FG all season .Since were all part of the Raider Nation, we need to start looking in to turf. I know the county has talked for years about it but it’s tuff to pay for turf when teachers are being furloughed. This IS the best shot at a state title we’ve had and I would hate to lose it because of the mush we call a field. Now like I said, I’m not here to be attacked but would like others thoughts on this.

EPDAD

November 10th, 2012
1:12 pm

Our Field is what is” THE BONEYARD”
It would be nice to have turf but our wonderful school board does not care what the sports fields look like. We have SPLOSH MONEY we could use to do this..They ( school board ) want all paulding county teams to be equal. One can’t have more than the other…It would’nt be fair….When we began the Fieldhouse Project in 03” yes i said 03. Was not built till 08” because it was;nt fair that the other county teams would not have the same. We could have built the HOUSE for alot less money then than what it cost…The powers above do not use common sense on issues like this. Can you tell a nerve has been struck….It’s a shame that EAST has to spend money on the Field ever year around 15 to 20 K to get it playable. The majority of the money comes from the Touchdown Club and the effort to keep it up. In years past we travel to Cobb School’s and Douglas Co. Schools and get to play on New TURF fields. Ok enough venting…..OUR FIELD IS WHAT IT IS…..MAKES EVERY GAME EXICITING AND UNPREDICTABLE….”THE BONEYARD”

RealisticFan

November 10th, 2012
2:12 pm

Perhaps there is a opportunity for a joint effort between all 5 schools football booster clubs to approach out big sponsors (Ragsdale Heating/Air and Ace Plumbing) about an even larger community investment. :) . Just a Thought. How about Coke ?

tuna had no chance

November 10th, 2012
3:00 pm

I knew from the start that alatuna didn’t have a chance of beating the Raiders. Did they think they could come into our house a walk away with a win, yeah right. Their guys are slow, small and have no talent. If we would have told them the plays they still couldn’t have stopped us. Their whole season has been pure luck. bucs go down in the first round just watch.

Toonaville

November 10th, 2012
3:30 pm

WOW,ignorant in the house

RealisticFan

November 10th, 2012
3:39 pm

@Toonaville

Sorry, we all have our few that seem to have to stir the pot and show their backsides.

Best of luck as you move thru the playoffs. You’ve got a talented, hard working, well coach group of young men.

FridayNightLightsFan

November 10th, 2012
4:38 pm

@Toonaville – I agree with RealisticFan. Sorry for that.

THE "CANNON RULES"!!

November 10th, 2012
5:34 pm

@ Toonaville / ALLATOONA fans…

Sorry folks we all have these types!

TICK…TICK…TICK…BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!!!
GO RAIDERS!!!
2012 REGION 5 AAAAA CHAMPIONS!…ON TO THE DOME!!!!

RAIDER FAN

November 10th, 2012
5:35 pm

Are you kidding me? Did someone claiming to be an E.P. supporter actually post that? That has got to be someone who got beat by the Bucs trying to make theirself feel better. True E.P. and toona fans know the truth.

BucFan

November 10th, 2012
5:43 pm

Great game East Paulding! I truely believe that it could have gone either way, but you guys really showed up. It was a well deserved win. Our Bucs boys have nothing to hang their head about. I still am VERY PROUD to be a BUC!

RaiderH8ter

November 10th, 2012
5:43 pm

I STILL don’t think East will make it pass the 1st Round of the playoffs. But IMHO, East Defense won the game last night. It was obvious the defense was well prepared, and ready for the challenge. Allatoona is not a very good 5A team, and will get pounded! East has a very good offense, that will be difficult to stop with #28 Thomas running, #30 Neal running, catching, and making plays, It seems like this kid would make chicken salad out of chicken sh#@ when he has the ball! East Defense will not allow them to get out of the 1st round. JMHO!

RAIDER FAN

November 10th, 2012
6:36 pm

Kind of a contradictory post there RaiderH8ter. First you say “the defense was well prepared and ready for the challenge” then you go on to say “East Defense will not allow them to get out of the 1st round”. So which is it? I think the defense will have their stuff together next week when C.C. comes a callin from Athens. We shall see, we shall see. GO 5AAAAA CHAMPION RAIDERS!!!!

COWBELLMAN

November 11th, 2012
9:12 pm

RaiderH8ter,

Do you not know the fundamentals of winning in the playoffs or big games in Highschool football is, or at any level. You have to be able to run the ball effectively on offense and you have to be able to stop the run on defense. Guess what buddy, East did both Friday night and they have done it all year long. Don’t sit there and say East’s defense is terrible. I don’t know what you look for in a defense but East’s defense is allowing 9 points a game 4th best in the state and their Offense is scoring 44 a game which is 4th best in the state. They are beating teams by an average of 33 points a game which ranks 2nd in the state. If you can stop the run on defense and make a team play from 3rd and long all night long it makes for a long night for the opposing offense and the defense is able to pin their ears back and come after the QB. If your offense is able to run the ball effectively then it sets them up for some play action passes deep down the field. LOL, I’d love to hear your idea of a good defense because if its anything opposite of the Raider defense then your WRONG!!!!!! Let me know if you want to sit down and watch game film, I would be happy to do that with you and point out and explain what a good defense looks like and how it is suppose to perform.

GOOOO RAIDERS!!!!!!

SpartFart2010

November 11th, 2012
11:49 pm

Well Well Well the Raiders dominated the BucS!! Congrats to both Teams thus far! Friday should be a blast..
@ Kick Some Grass Dude I feel your pain, the field at East has always been a topic of disscussion, and the people who work on it do a excellent job. As far as he Realturf goes, the money has been in the S.P.L.O.S.T for 2 yrars now, but the BOE will not pull the trigger, they say they cannot justify spending the money. I guess they do not see that it is a money saver. I mean for example it cost 3-600 dollars just to paint the field for every GAME played there, not just the Varisity but the sub-varsity as well as the Junior program.. looking at saving at 3-5k a year in paint alone.. see my point?

SpartFart2010

November 11th, 2012
11:51 pm

not to mention other sports painting the field as well….

RAIDER FAN

November 12th, 2012
7:09 am

Heck, from the looks of the field the last couple of home games they haven’t repainted anything but the Raider shield at mid-field.