By Bob Giordano
For the Forsyth County News
Productive offense nights from quarterback Ryan DiFazio and running back Patrick Sullivan helped drive the Pinecrest Academy football team to a 37-30 win over Walker on Friday night in Marietta.
DiFazio, the Paladins’ 5-foot-7, 156-pound senior, drove the Paladins on the ground and through the air and accounted for a crucial score. He gave all the credit to his offensive line.
"They opened holes for me all night," DiFazio said.
The game wasn't decided until the final six seconds, when Walker quarterback Patrick Wright, working from the Pinecrest 12-yard line, overthrew his receiver on fourth down.
Walker took a late first quarter lead on a four-yard slant from Walker to wide receiver Austin Hughes to make it 7-0. The lead did not last long. On the last play of the quarter, Difazio took off on a dazzling 39-yard keeper around the left side to the Wolverine seven-yard line. From there, DiFazio gave Patrick Sullivan the handoff for the tying score.
After that, the game turned into a heavyweight match, with Walker landing most of the blows. The Wolverines held a 24-14 lead midway in the third quarter. It wasn't enough. The Paladins fought back thanks to DiFazio's arm and legs. Midway through the fourth quarter, he hit senior tight end David Stubbs with a fifty-two yard bomb to the Walker ten yard line. From there his legs took over as he scored on the next play for the score. The missed extra point made it 24-20 Walker.
With under two minutes left in the game and Walker leading 30-29, Sullivan gave the Paladins the win with a sweep from 12 yards out. A successful two-point conversion gave Pinecrest the 37-30 win.
"They never gave up." said Pinecrest coach Terance Mathis." "It was our time. I knew we could do it."
He was right. The Paladins improved their record to 2-3 with the win.