Roswell at Lambert
When, where: Friday, 7:30 p.m., at The Horn in Suwanee.
Records, rankings: Lambert is 7-3 overall, the No. 2 seed from Region 6-AAAAAA and unranked; Roswell is 7-3, the No. 3 seed from Region 5-AAAAAA and unranked.
Series history: Lambert leads 2-0.
Last meeting: Lambert won 24-9 in 2013.
What to know: There’s not one cut-and-dry way to stop Roswell, though the same could be said for South Forsyth’s offense, and that didn’t turn out well for the War Eagles. Roswell, however, has Division I talent at just about every position on the field. Quarterback? Check—James Whitaker (Sr., 6-0, 190) completed 57.5 percent of passes this year for 1,790 yards and 20 touchdowns and only four interceptions. Running back? Yep—sophomore Sheldon Evans (5-10, 210) rushed for 301 yards last Friday and finished the season with 1,487 yards and 16 touchdowns. Wide receiver? Indeed—Mechane Slade caught more than 800 yards worth of passes and is verbally committed to Memphis, while senior Hunter Coleman (5-11, 185) has interest from Iowa State and Memphis; slot receiver Kendrick Jackson is diminutive but fast (sub-4.5 forty). Cameron Whiteman (6-4, 285) is the Hornets’ best offensive lineman.
Junior linebacker Tre’ Lamar patrols the middle of Roswell’s defense, and he’s imposing at 6-foot-3 and 230-plus pounds. Defensive end Tyrone Hopper (Jr., 6-4, 205) is a dangerous pass rusher and is being recruited by Tennessee and Purdue. Safety Shakur Jackson and cornerback Rodney Dorcemont are both D-I prospects in the secondary.
Lambert stretched its winning streak to six games with last Friday’s 40-7 win over South; the Horns are starting to build confidence with a stingy defense and a steady offense that has cut down on turnovers. Trevor O’Brien (1,193 yards, 10 touchdowns) seems to run harder as the weeks go by, thanks in part to a rebuilt Lambert offensive line that started to mesh in recent weeks. The Horns’ defense was up to the challenge late in the season, shutting out Northview, holding off West Forsyth and holding South’s Tyler LaFlamme to a season-low 12 rushing yards. Senior linebacker Adison Schimmelpfenning is always around the ball; Trevon McSwain and Will Dunavant turned into a formidable duo at defensive end, and defensive back Justyn Jean-Felix is playing his best football of the season. Coach Louis Daniel said last week that the Horns were finally starting to believe in themselves.
Maxwell Projection: Roswell by 15.