South Forsyth dominated all facets of the game to take down Johns Creek 42-3 on Friday and set up a winner-take-all meeting with Lambert next week for the Region 6-AAAAAA title.
South (8-1, 7-1) was not only terrific on offense with 261 yards rushing and 192 yards passing, but the defense was extra impressive as they held the Gladiators to just 55 yards of total offense with negative 32 yards rushing and 87 yards passing.
The War Eagles were led defensively by Curtis Roach who had one of the team’s four sacks and as well as the lone interception. Ennor Armah also had a big defensive game as he recovered the Gladiators bobbled punt attempt in the end zone for the final score of the game.
On the ground, South was led by senior running back Sam Outlaw who had 16 carries for 92 yards and two touchdowns, and junior quarterback Davis Shanley who ran the ball five times for 87 yards. Shanley was also 12 for 15 passing for 175 yards and two touchdowns, and senior receiver Jalen Camp hauled in six passes for 77 yards and a touchdown.
“Our team played great,” said Shanley. “Our offensive linemen, they started off struggling, but they bounced back. That’s what this game was all about; bouncing back when adversity hits, and that’s what we did tonight.”
With South’s big matchup next week, this game could have been considered a trap-game. The War Eagles have just one region championship in school history, a Region 7-AA title in 1997. But head coach Jeff Arnette knew that would not happen.
“I was asked a million times all week if we would overlook Johns Creek,” said Arnette, “and I said it to everyone that asked that there is too much leadership on the team. Our leaders wouldn’t let that happen. Our coaches wouldn’t let that happen. We played a really good game tonight, and we focused on just tonight. And I am proud of them for that.”
When it comes to the big week ahead, both Shanley and Arnette seem to be on the same page in that the team needs to enjoy the moment but also to make sure that they are focused on the week ahead.
“Well, right now, we just need to go and enjoy this,” said Arnette. “I don’t know what exactly we need to concentrate on. We need to get better; I know that. We need to correct our mistakes. We had several tonight. We are just going to enjoy the weekend, and hopefully have a great week of practice.
“We need to concentrate on ourselves,” said Shanley. “This is all about us. We need to focus. We need to do what we need to do, and we will let everything else take care of itself.”