Wilkinson County at Lincoln County
When, where: 7 p.m. Friday, Buddy Bufford Field, Lincolnton
Records, rankings: Wilkinson County is 8-3, the No. 9 seed and ranked No. 7; Lincoln County is 10-1, the No. 1 seed and ranked No. 4.
Last meeting: Lincoln County won 21-19 on Nov. 2 in the regular season.
Three things to know: 1. This is a rematch of the Nov. 2 game that decided the Region 7 championship. Trailing 21-19, Wilkinson had first-and-goal at the Lincoln County 7-yard line but missed a 38-yard field goal. Wilkinson later had first down at the Lincoln 24 but turned the ball over on downs. Lincoln County overcame a 13-0 deficit. Lincoln County RB Mike McIntire rushed for 138 yards, and Wilkinson County QB David Whipple was 10-of-18 passing for 151 yards. 2. Whipple is a three-year starter at quarterback for Wilkinson with more than 4,000 yards passing in his career. He led a comeback over Miller County last week after Wilkinson trailed 14-0 and 26-20. 3. McIntire leads Lincoln County in rushing with 1,172 yards. He has scored 16 touchdowns. QB Ben Turner has passed for 1,116 yards and 12 touchdowns, eight to Zireycus Letman.
Maxwell Ratings’ projection: Lincoln County by 5
Winner plays: Dooly County/Seminole County winner
Dooly County at Seminole County
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Seminole Stadium, Donalsonville
Records, rankings: Dooly County is 9-2, the No. 5 seed and unranked; Seminole County is 9-2, the No. 4 seed and unranked.
Last meeting: Dooly County won 22-0 in the first round of the 2003 Class A playoffs.
Three things to know: 1. Dooly County’s best player is DT Montravius Adams, a major college recruit with more than 20 tackles for losses. On offense, Dooly has two 1,000-yard rushers in RB A.J. Smith (1,629 yards) and sophomore RB Chanin Hamilton (1,264). They’ve scored 25 touchdowns between them. But don’t sit on the run. WR Cortney Clark has nine TD catches on 34 receptions for 654 yards. 2. Seminole County passes the least of any playoff team remaining. QB/LB Jakhari Martin is 16-of-39 passing. No other player has completed a pass. He leads the team in rushing with 788 yards and has 46 tackles on defense. Freshman RB Thomas Aiken has 717 yards rushing in only seven games. The team’s MVP is probably OL/LB Alex Koonce, a two-way starter with 16 tackles for losses. 3. Dooly County leads the series between these schools 7-4. Located about 110 miles from each other, they’ve been in the same region several times, though not since 1995. They have one common opponent. Dooly beat Turner County 19-8. Seminole beat Turner 34-32.
Maxwell Ratings’ projection: Dooly County by 2
Winner plays: Wilkinson County/Lincoln County winner
Trion at Emanuel County Institute
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Rountree Stadium, Twin City
Records, rankings: Trion is 9-2, the No. 11 seed and unranked; Emanuel County Institute is 10-1, the No. 3 seed and ranked No. 2.
Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting.
Three things to know: 1. ECI RB Greg Purcell has rushed for a team-leading 827 yards in only nine games. He has rushed for 130 and 109 the past two games, which were the Region 3-A championship against Savannah Christian and the first round against Gordon Lee. He also is the team’s receiving leader with 13 catches for 343 yards. 2. Trion is allowing 10.1 points per game, the least of any school still playing in the public school division. Trion is allowing less than 200 yards of total offense per game. Trion gets most of its yards on offense from FB/LB Kingston Lanier, a three-year starter, and QB Corey Bethune. 3. Trion is trying to make the semifinals for the first time since 2003. ECI can make the semis for the first time since 2008.
Maxwell Ratings’ projection: Emanuel County Institute by 20
Winner plays: Marion County/Wilcox County winner
Marion County at Wilcox County
When, where: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Patriot Stadium, Rochelle
Records, rankings: Marion County is 9-2, the No. 7 seed and unranked; Wilcox County is 9-2, the No. 2 seed and ranked No. 5.
Last meeting: This is the teams’ first meeting, although Wilcox County beat Tri-County (of which Marion County was a part until 2006) 19-18 in the 1999 regular season.
Three things to know: 1. Marion County RB James Taylor has rushed for 1,136 yards and 16 touchdowns this season. He averaged only 56.6 yards through the first five games. He has averaged 142.2 yards over his last six. 2. Wilcox County is the most pass-happy team remaining in Class A. QB Makail Grace has thrown for 2,702 yards and 25 touchdowns and rushed for 736 yards in only 10 games. WR Johnathan Howard has 86 receptions for 1,280 yards and 15 touchdowns. 3. These schools are only 85 miles apart, but the only times that they have met in football were in 1998 and 1998, when Marion County was part of Tri-County High. Wilcox won both of those games. They have common opponents this season. Marion beat Dooly County 12-7, Greenville 28-21 and Charlton 31-12. Wilcox beat Dooly 28-14 and Greenville 42-14 but lost to Charlton 32-26.
Maxwell Ratings’ projection: Wilcox County by 15
Winner plays: Trion/Emanuel County Institute winner
Produced by Georgia High School Football Daily, a free e-mail newsletter. To join the mailing list, click here.