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Paglia: Football season now a sprint to the finish
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Forsyth County News

It’s a sprint from here on out to the end of the regular season for Forsyth County high school football teams.

No more rest from bye weeks.

By now, we know far more about local teams than I thought I did back in the summer when I projected the best- and worst-case scenario season for every team. We’ve had our share of breakout games (Central’s 41-13 win over Riverwood), breakout performances (South Forsyth running back Tyler LaFlamme’s 435-yard game against Chattahoochee) and breakout stars (Central running back Shaun Diebel).

And yet, the story of the season is far from complete.

Can Central maintain its feel-good start? Is Lambert ready for another second-half playoff push? Can North avoid a winless season? Can Pinecrest keep its spot in the top 16 of the GHSA Power Ratings for Class A? Can South continue its scoring prowess as its schedule gets tougher? Can West find some consistency in time?

Here’s a look at where Forsyth teams stand against my preseason scenarios:

FORSYTH CENTRAL

Best: 5-5

Worst: 2-8

Now: 3-2. The Bulldogs have been the feel-good story of the season so far, especially after an upset victory over previously undefeated Riverwood. Tests remain against Sprayberry (Oct. 17) and Cambridge (Oct. 31).

LAMBERT

Best: 9-1

Worst: 4-6

Now: 2-3. Looks like last season all over again – a 1-3 start followed by a victory against North Forsyth. Will it lead to another playoff appearance this time?

NORTH FORSYTH

Best: 7-3

Worst: 3-7

Now: 0-5. Now mounting season-ending injuries have started to compound the Raiders’ woes this season, though North has winnable games left against Johns Creek (Oct. 17) and Habersham Central (Oct. 31).

PINECREST ACADEMY

Best: 7-3

Worst: 1-9

Now: 4-1. I didn’t know how the Paladins would stack up in a new region. So far, so good. Pinecrest sits at No. 6 in the latest GHSA Class A Power Ratings for private schools.

SOUTH FORSYTH

Best: 7-3

Worst: 4-6

Now: 4-1. I figured the War Eagles would be contenders again this season, but the schedule gets tougher in the second half, starting tonight against Northview followed by games against West Forsyth, Alpharetta and Lambert.

WEST FORSYTH

Best: 8-2

Worst: 6-4

Now: 2-3. The Wolverines are past the rough stretch of their schedule, and they’ve taken their lumps. But they’ve also shown glimpses of being able to make a county-record fifth straight state playoff appearance.

Brian Paglia is sports editor for the Forsyth County News. He can be reached at bpaglia@forsythnews.com, 770-205-8976 or follow him on Twitter at @BrianPaglia.