By Zach Shugan
The first week of the 2021 season is in the books. 11 local teams were in action Friday night, and over half of them started off the season with a win.
Here is a rundown of the results from Friday night and what’s next for each team, along with a look at how the Week One predictions fared.
No. 1 Milton vs Hapeville Charter
Prediction: Milton wins, 48-10
Result: Milton won, 45-0
Milton cruised to victory after jumping out to a 31-0 lead in the first half on the No. 7-ranked team in Class 4A. The Eagles play at North Cobb next week in a game set to be televised nationwide by ESPN. The Warriors entered the season right behind Milton in the 7A rankings at No. 2 but lost their opening game to Buford, Class 6A’s top-ranked team and defending state champion.
Alpharetta vs Chattahoochee
Prediction: Alpharetta wins, 35-20
Result: Alpharetta won, 35-0
Alpharetta shut out Chattahoochee at home Friday for the 10th win in 10 years against its crosstown rival. You can find pictures and more on the game here. Now, the Raiders turn their attention to a historic matchup at Hoover (AL) next week. It’ll be the first time in program history that Alpharetta has played a team from outside Georgia, and it’s also the former home of Raiders head coach Jason Kervin. Hoover opened its season Sunday by playing North Gwinnett at Mercedes-Benz Stadium and won 38-14. Chattahoochee will host Gainesville (0-1), which lost at home to Johns Creek in the Corky Kell Classic.
Roswell vs South Forsyth
Prediction: Roswell wins, 27-24
Result: Roswell won, 45-26
Roswell won big behind a game to remember from Robbie Roper. The senior quarterback accounted for 500 yards, passing for 447 yards and six touchdowns and rushing for 53 yards. The Hornets will be on the road next week at crosstown rival Centennial, as they look to win their eighth consecutive Mayor’s Cup.
Centennial @ Lambert
Prediction: Lambert wins, 34-24
Result: Lambert won, 28-3
Centennial fell to Class 7A’s Lambert on the road in its season opener. The Knights’ only points came on a field goal early in the third quarter. They’ll be back home next week hosting Roswell and seeking their first win against the Hornets since 2011.
Johns Creek @ Gainesville
Prediction: Johns Creek wins, 41-24
Result: Johns Creek won, 26-10
Johns Creek overcame a 10-0 deficit and scored 26 unanswered points before lightning in the area forced the game to be called early in the fourth quarter. The bad weather might have saved Gainesville from losing by a larger margin, as Johns Creek certainly had all the momentum on its side. The Gladiators will hit the road again next week, this time traveling out of state to play Travelers Rest High School near Greenville, South Carolina.
No. 1 Blessed Trinity vs Woodland (Stockbridge)
Prediction: Blessed Trinity wins, 50-24
Result: Blessed Trinity won, 34-6
Blessed Trinity kicked off the 2021 season and Tom Hall era with a win. All-American junior running back Justice Haynes scored what ended up as the game-winning touchdown early in the second quarter to help put the Titans up 7-0. Next week is a big one for Blessed Trinity, as Class 4A’s No. 3-ranked team Marist will be in town for a showdown between the former region foes.
Northview @ Forsyth Central
Prediction: Forsyth Central wins, 21-14
Result: Forsyth Central won, 62-0
Northview was shut out by Forysth Central on the road in head coach Scott Schwarzer’s first game at the helm. The Titans have a bye week to recover and tune up before their next game, which is Sept. 3 at home against Chattahoochee.
Class A Private
No. 7 Fellowship @ Christian Heritage
Prediction: Fellowship wins, 28-24
Result: Fellowship won, 31-21
Fellowship started strong in the Tim McFarlin era, traveling to north Georgia and taking down a Christian Heritage team that had given the Paladins fits in the past. This marks the second consecutive victory for Fellowship over Christian Heritage after starting out 0-6 against the Lions. The Paladins, now ranked No. 4 in Class A Private, have a bye week before heading to Sharpsburg on Sept. 3 to take on No. 1 Trinity Christian in a rematch of last year’s state quarterfinal game, which Fellowship lost 41-27.
Mount Pisgah @ No. 5 Wesleyan
Prediction: Wesleyan wins, 38-17
Result: Wesleyan won, 31-0
Mount Pisgah fell on the road to one of Class A Private’s perennial powerhouses in its season opener and Ryan Livezey’s first game as head coach. The Patriots will be back on the road next week, heading to Kennesaw to take on Mount Paran (1-0). The Eagles defeated Lakeview Academy by a score of 48-13 in their opener.
St. Francis vs No. 10 North Cobb Christian
Prediction: North Cobb Chrisitian wins, 24-14
Result: North Cobb Christian won, 24-14
St. Francis held its own against a Top 10 team in Class A Private in North Cobb Christian. Sure, moral victories are never as sweet as real wins, but the Knights should feel decent about this result coming off a one-win season in 2020. Friday night was definitely a step in the right direction for St. Francis, which plays at Athens Christian (1-0) next week.