Class A Blog: What to watch for Friday? ELCA and Landmark on collision course for Region 5 championship game

By S. Thomas Coleman
For the AJC

Here are the top five games on the Class A slate this weekend, along with two more worth the price of admission.

Pace Academy (4-4, 1-3) at No. 1 Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy (7-0, 4-0). A win by ELCA will set up the biggest game in Class A this season next week, when the Chargers, the defending private school champs, travel to No. 6 Landmark Christian (8-0, 4-0) with the Region 5 title on the line. Pace needs an upset to increase its power rating and bolster its chances of making the playoff field of 16. Currently, the Knights are on the outside looking in.

No. 6 Landmark Christian (8-0, 4-0) at Holy Innocents (5-4, 3-2). If both Landmark and ELCA stave off upsets, next week will be the biggest game to date for both, as ELCA will come to downtown Fairburn for the Region 5 title game. Holy Innocents, like Pace, needs a win to fortify its standing in the top 16.

Fellowship Christian (5-3, 2-2) at No. 8 Mount Pisgah Christian (8-0, 4-0). The Patriots can take a huge step toward winning their first region title in the program’s history with a win over rival Fellowship Christian. Mount Pisgah is currently in the No. 1 spot in the Class A private school power ratings.

Pinecrest Academy (5-3, 3-2) at No. 9 Prince Avenue Christian (7-1, 4-0). Prince Avenue can win its second Region 8 title in the past three seasons with a victory over Pinecrest, which needs an upset to claw its way into the top 16 of the power ratings.

No. 10 Darlington (7-1, 4-0) at Our Lady of Mercy (3-5, 3-2). In a scheduling quirk brought about by the late cancellation of its season by Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy, Darlington will travel south to Fayetteville for a key non-region contest. A win by the Tigers could lift them over Mt. Pisgah in the Class A power ratings, and give them the edge in the race for the Region 6 championship, which will go to the team with the highest power rating. Currently, Mt. Pisgah is No. 1 while Darlington is tied with Landmark Christian at No. 2.

Here are two more to check out as well:

No. 3 Seminole County (8-0, 4-0) at Miller County (4-5, 3-2)

No. 5 Marion County (8-0, 5-0) at Hawkinsville (5-3, 3-2)

37 comments Add your comment

JSP

October 31st, 2013
12:44 pm

ELCA over Pace: 35-14, Pace is good enough to make this game respectable, but it’s still ELCA

Landmark over HI: 21-17, I say Landmark will pull this one out late. That’s what they’ve doing all year.

Pisgah over Fellowship: 42-14, Fellowship’s D isn’t very good and Pisgah’s D is. Fellowship will probably give them a tough first half, but Pisgah pulls away in the second half.

PACA over Pinecrest: 48-13, PACA is just the superior team. Pinecrest doesn’t have the offense to keep up.

OLM over Darlington: 17-13, Honestly this game could go either way, but I think OLM is due.

KRCS over Whitfield: 28-24, Somehow, it looks like Whitfield (ranked 17th) actually controls their own destiny to get in the playoffs. As of right now, they’re last in Region 6B and aren’t even scheduled to play in the Region 6 crossover game. KRCS has had some tough losses and I just think they’re the better team.

Mt. Paran over Walker: 49-7, Coming off of a tough loss last week, Paran is looking to take their anger out on someone.

Just my predictions……

Tiger Patpaw

October 31st, 2013
6:07 pm

@JSP

I’m lousy at predicting scores and I really don’t know enough about each team to prognosticate, so I’ll take exception to only one off your selections.

In the one game you indicate could go either way, I think that Darlington will prevail over OLM.

Both have strong defenses and their offenses, although as dissimilar as can be imagined, can erupt with game changing plays. The only phase indicating a distinct advantage is Darlington’s kicking game. The high flying OLM offense may start with poor field position and the Tigers are a threat to score with the field goal.

Save for an unequal number of major mistakes and turnovers by one of the two teams, I say flip your score and add another 3 for the Romans.

Swamp Lizard

October 31st, 2013
6:19 pm

Here are my picks …
ELCA over Pace
Holy Innocents over Landmark …. yes, that’s right.
Mt Pisgah over Fellowship
Prince Ave over Pincrest
Our Lady of Mercy over Darlington ….. YEP!
Seminole Co over Miller Co
Marion Co over Hawkinsville

Tiger Patpaw

October 31st, 2013
6:43 pm

@Swamp Lizard

Saw your apologetic crow post last week at additional blog sites. Sir you do eat with class.
Which of us will be served the bitter dish this Friday?

Swamp Lizard

October 31st, 2013
7:04 pm

I don’t know …. I really admire the Landmark football team ( coaches & players ) …. but picking Holy Innocents over them might burn bridges. Picking OLM over a very good Darlington team might make me eat some crow too.
I would have lost my house on the ECI / Johnson Co game last week ….. never seen that coming! I just love high school football …. I do have a senior playing this year and really follow Class A close

At Last

October 31st, 2013
7:32 pm

Who is the toughest? Single A private or Single A public…well I don’t think we will know for some time because they won’t play each other. How is it that single A is the only classification that is divided two ways? Why not with others that have private schools? I know its the numbers at these small rural counties and the numbers at exclusive private schools that tend to be small. It just seems strange that the two best teams public and private can’t play for all of the marbles and it be a single victor.

Predictions Friday 11/1/2013
OLM over Darlington 24-17
Landmark over HIES 31-17
ELCA over Pace 36-21
Mt. Pisgah over Fellowship 42-6

As anticipated the biggest game of the year will be between Landmark Christian and Eagles Landing Christian in beautiful downtown Fairburn. When its all over these two teams will take one knee in the middle of the field and pray embrace and prepare for war in the playoffs. If we are really lucky these two will be on opposing sides of the draw. The real big showdown will be for the state title at the dome where they meet again for another historic meeting. God speed to both programs!

At Last

October 31st, 2013
7:42 pm

@Swamp Lizard…I enjoy reading your posts and you are very knowledgeable about the teams and you reserve the right to your opinion. This is what its all about…boys turning into men and in the process learning to become even better eventual fathers and husbands because of excellence and hard work in their youth. I myself have been a single A fan for many years and its nice to see them get some attention for a change. Go single A football!!

Tiger Patpaw

October 31st, 2013
7:56 pm

@At Last

Was on a size AAAAAA high school team in Louisville. Prefer the Georgia Class A show.

bucket

October 31st, 2013
7:57 pm

@ At last – I can certainly understand your affinity for your own team and I have great respect for the programs at ELCA and Landmark. However, you have insinuated before and, in your last post you wrote, as if the only legitimate outcome of the season is if Landmark and ELCA meet for the private state championship. Everyone is certainly entitled to their own opinion, but I personally believe the playoffs will reveal that ELCA is head and shoulders better than the rest of private A and that there are a good number of teams that could actually be their opponent in the Dome. Perhaps a team playing ELCA for the second time in the same season might give them a better game, but it is anything but a foregone conclusion that if Landmark and ELCA are seeded in separate brackets that they will meet in the Dome. That didn’t happen last year when they were seeded in opposite brackets and it may not happen again this year.

Tiger Patpaw

October 31st, 2013
8:06 pm

@Swamp Lizard

I have a junior grandson. Watched his father win state championships at Louisville Trinity. But I have to say, dad and I ain’t never seen nothin’ like Georgia Class A football. Too much fun!

this guy

October 31st, 2013
8:12 pm

@Swamp Lizard…No bridges burned sir. Simply your opinion which you are entitled to and considering how evenly matched the two teams are it is not an off the wall pick. Plus Holy Innocents is at home and playing desperate as they sit on the power ratings invisible bubble. Besides Landmark has played teams that should have/could have beat them all season…what’s another couple to end the regular season.

ELCA over Pace 46-13
LCS over HIES 13-10
Pisgah over Fellowship 35-7
PACS over Pinecrest 40-0
Mercy over Darlington 20-17
Seminole Co over Miller Co 42-14
Marion Co over Hawkinsville 26-7

Best of luck and safety to all playing, watching, and spectating.

LoveFridayFootball

October 31st, 2013
8:14 pm

If the Landmark players and coaches are looking past HI to next weeks game against ELCA like a lot of posters on here, they’ll have one loss on their record. HI is a good team and CAN beat Landmark.

ToughCall

October 31st, 2013
11:32 pm

LoveFriday has it right…….with a week off, and probably reading too much of their own news for ELCA game LM might be stale…..+ HI is playing for next game and wins this if, as usual, keeps turnovers to a minimum. Low TO ratio by their big QB going to Cinci with a lot of good weapons around him, Young but very tough schedule up till now with 2 AAAAA and AA teams on the schedule and George Walton prior to Region going 2-2 in those games. LM then beats ELCA following week.

MCMBAA

November 1st, 2013
12:49 am

@ToughCall ….. good points and a good read all the way to the end. But your last sentence?? Seriously?? The only way Landmark beats ELCA is in their sleep with a baseball bat. On the field, short of Landmark parking a bus in the endzone, ELCA plays lights out. Please don’t get me wrong, I love me some Landmark football, but game for game, same 3 opponents this year, Landmark is 107-44 (63 point delta) versus ELCA 139-12 (127 point delta).

I know, any given night, yada, yada, yada, but I’m not putting the house up for that bet.

Let’s get past this weekend and talk about it next Thursday.

Nickajack Observor

November 1st, 2013
6:51 am

JSP … A clarification regarding your take on the Kings Ridge-Whitefield game. Walker, KR, and Whitefield are all 1-3 in the official sub-region standings. St Francis (win over WA and loss to KR), and North Cobb Christian (loss to Walker) are playing non-region schedules and their games don’t factor.

Landmark2012

November 1st, 2013
7:16 am

I can assure you that Landmark is not looking past HI. They have watched a lot of tape and understand how big and physical they are. This week is like every other week for Landmark in that they are “eating the elephant one bite at a time”. HI is a quality team and will be ready tonight. So will Landmark…..should be a good one

At Last

November 1st, 2013
7:56 am

Preparation is the key to winning games and all of these top six teams prepare to win. They all see their next opponent and they focus in on that. If you have seen any of these top teams play this is what you see. What you also see is are young men 15 to 18 that will play for their life based on how they are trained. Records and past prowess don’t determine this. This happens on a field any given night in battle. I can assure you that all of these teams prepare well and they will be ready to roll tonite. God bless and lets have great football tonite.

ELCA

November 1st, 2013
7:57 am

Pace over ELCA at a commitment field that will have standing water…. Pace is fired up… they win finish…

I wanna see PACE WIN…. ELCA IS NOT ELCA FROM LAST YEAR

Independent Pigskin

November 1st, 2013
8:47 am

ELCA is not a real ELCA (fan)

BT

November 1st, 2013
9:31 am

Times are achanging…the last time I looked at the top 10 teams in A, 6/10 were private schools!! Where are the Lincoln and Wilcox counties and other public schools that once had top programs?

drivebypost

November 1st, 2013
10:42 am

For you Landmark supporters, how would you compare the prospects for this team as compared with last year’s LC team? I get that this ‘13 group has the “it” factor that has set them apart thus far, but I’ve gotten the impression that this year’s success has been unexpected to some extent and in some sense the clock could begin to strike midnight at any time? So, “it” factor aside, do you believe LC is a better team than the ‘12 group at this point in the season?

lcsparent

November 1st, 2013
11:03 am

@ Drivebypost……Last years team had a lot of senior starters. a talented group that was the reason we went deep into the playoffs. that team lost 3 games. You cant compare the two teams till after the season is over as the ‘13 team has 2 regular season games to go and who know how far into the playoffs we will go. Ask me which team was better after the playoffs…….But this ‘13 team…they defy explanation…small in size…small in number(36 active players). You are right..they have “it”.

lcsparent

November 1st, 2013
11:07 am

@Drivebypost…..Also Landmark lost Jeremiah Kirkland, a RB that had 2000 yards rushing. He left to go to Lovejoy. Haven’t heard anything out of him this year, but that was a big loss to the Landmark team. He was our best weapon.

Sportsnut

November 1st, 2013
11:23 am

Kirkland is slowly getting back from an ankle injury. He missed a couple of games but has been able to contribute. He could be healthy by playoff time. Good luck to Landmark but I think ELCA is the best in the state in A.

drivebypost

November 1st, 2013
12:01 pm

@lcsparent, I won’t need to ask about the comparison after the playoffs. I’ve not had the opportunity to see LCS yet this year. I’m aware of how the makeup of the two teams is different. At this point, it just puzzles me why such confidence (in general) is often expressed from Landmark supporters that ELCA & LCS should meet in the final this year as long as they are not on the same side of the bracket. I thought last year’s LCS team was stronger than this year’s version-but of course that may or may not correlate with playoff victories. I was just curious to know if I had been missing something other than this year’s team has had “it” so far.

LanFan

November 1st, 2013
12:56 pm

driveBypost– I don’t think the posters you refer to are always LCS fans. I think many of them are Football fans who want to see what are perceived at the top of the crop to meet. I think most of the real LCS people are the ones who are guarded about what they say because we know what we have been seeing defies what we think we should see. I know nothing about HI except that some of there fans want them to beat us. Kind of the way it always is.

I think most of the smack comes from others. If you see our team get a closer look. We have a lot of 9th graders who could get killed if allowed on the field, but it raises our number on the bench. Hopefully in another year of two we will have the numbers and sized to give some of you pause.

The most talented and stacked LCS teams I have seen were probably 5 to 10 years ago and those teams didn’t win anything past the region. Our teams the last 3 years have been less dominating but winning more. Go Figure. I am still not betting against them.

Good luck to everyone on the field tonight and may everyone come home safe.

Indianfan

November 1st, 2013
9:50 pm

Seminole 28 Miller 0. Final.

Swamp Lizard

November 1st, 2013
10:21 pm

@ Indianfan …. “looks” like Seminole Co is for real this year.

Independent Pigskin

November 1st, 2013
10:29 pm

Holy Innocents’ 29 – 28 over Landmark Christian….LC missed a 52 yard FG at the end.

indianfan

November 1st, 2013
10:37 pm

@ Swamp Lizard…. Hope so…. there’s a lot of football left. Still a little fine tuning to do but they’ve got a lot of heart

At Last

November 1st, 2013
10:57 pm

HIES outlasted Landmark tonight. Big game for them. Outstanding game for both schools. Nailbiter until the very end.

Tiger Patpaw

November 1st, 2013
11:25 pm

Just got home from the Darlington @ Our Lady of Mercy game.
Anybody got a great rub recipe for crow?

I sure didn’t expect that high of a score.
I completely muffed on the kicking game advantage. (Tiger’s kicking specialist was at home sick.) Each OLM kickoff was a touchback and the field goal was a no-doubter even at that distance.
The Bobcats’ offensive performance was not as arial as anticipated.

At least the Tigers did not roll over, making a 4th quarter comback.

‘Grats Bobcats

Innocent Bystander

November 2nd, 2013
12:02 am

Where is the clown that picked Pace over ELCA or even the folks that thought Pace would make it close ????? What has happened this season for you guys to think that was a possibility ???? Why do you doubt the King of The Hill ? What about the even match up on the perimeter ? Dalton Ethridge ripped Pace all night and nobody, regardless of where they will play D-1 football could cover Davis Carrandi or Jamal Tooks !!! Our Defense totally SHUT DOWN Pace in every way possible & even score 2 TD’s ! Our D-Tackle picked up a fumble & out ran their whole team to the endzone from 45 out ! The best play Pace made all night was a corner kick by their punter ! Let me guess, you’re already working on your “Landmark over ELCA” blog ! Well keep dreaming. No need to sugar coat it. ELCA will BLAST Landmark just like they have everyone else ! You guys keep talking the talk, ELCA WILL KEEP WALKING THE WALK !!! By the way, Darlington loses to OLM ,yet was ranked ahead of ELCA in Power Rankings ????? If those Power Rankings were accurate, ELCA would hold the top 5 spots by itself !!! Talk smack about that……..

Pace Student

November 2nd, 2013
7:18 am

After watching Pace all season ELCA is by far the best team in the state. I don’t think the score should have been as lopsided. After all first three touchdowns were off a fumble, a pick 6 with our backup QB and because of an offsides on 4th and 5. But still ELCA is head and shoulders above Landmark and probably anyone else in Single A private. Probably even public and AA.

Innocent Bystander

November 2nd, 2013
10:38 am

@ pace student…… I’ve read a lot of your posts & I have to say, you have a lot more sense than most of the old guys that pretend to know football. I jab a lot of people on here, but only because they post these absurd posts. Even though you’re a Pace fan, you can still be objective. I wish more posters had your sense

A classful fan

November 2nd, 2013
11:42 am

I hope your including yourself in that “absurd posts group” See previous post above innocent bystander…SMH

Innocent Bystander

November 2nd, 2013
3:32 pm

@ A Classful ……I’m SMH at you SYH. Get rid of the thin skin. That post was a jab at all the crazy post throughout the week regarding ELCA/Pace. I had to hit on as many topics as I could at midnight. Don’t take it to heart, just zing me back. I’ll shoot you my address so you can send that tuition money. Thanks