Central Gwinnett at Lambert
When, where: Friday, 7:30, at The Horn in Suwanee.
Records, rankings, seedings: Central is 4-6 overall, unranked in Class 7A and the No. 4 seed from Region 7-7A; Lambert is 6-4, unranked and the No. 1 seed from Region 5.
Series record: First meeting.
What to know: Lambert scored 59 points last week and didn’t allow a score against Forsyth Central to clinch the program’s first region title in its short history. Now it will be asked to win its first playoff game. Every year except for 2009 and 2012 the Longhorns have finished the regular season near the top of their division, but that elusive postseason victory has evolved into a thorn in the program’s side. Even though Lambert hosts a team with a losing record on Friday it will have to be on the top of its game to get by. The 59-0 win over Central wasn’t a surprise—the blown 17-0 lead at Milton the week before was. Lambert went from what looked like one of the more explosive offenses in the area to a team searching for its identity in recent weeks. A win over the Black Knights could do a lot to not only get over another hump but propel the talented Longhorns even further through the postseason.
Everything will start with Jarren Williams, Central’s quarterback who has 26 touchdown and just two interceptions on the season. He’s also carried for 329 yards and seven more scores. Senior Derik Lawrence leads the team with 48 catches for 680 yards and 10 touchdowns. Lambert will likely start Brian Wright at tailback—the senior missed time early in the year and Justin Bruno filled in to become a dynamic playmaker, but Wright has added stability to the offense.
Up next: The winner will face the winner of Tift County and North Cobb.