It was a big night Friday for two of the three local football teams. Eastside defeated Morgan County 48-7 to win its second straight Region 8-AAA championship while Alcovy secured its first trip to the state layoffs with a 30-0 win over Forest Park.
Newton had a chance to punch its ticket to the state round of 32 but came up a bit short as Union Grove took advantage of a fumble late in the first half to take a 14-12 lead en route to a 21-19 win.
Eastside finished in a three-way tie with Hart and Stephens County a year ago and was co-champions with Hart but earned the No. 1 seed due to the GHSA rulebook which stated the tie breaker was how teams fared against opponents in the same classification. Eastside never face a Class AAA opponent outside of the region while Hart lost to Thomson earlier in the year.
This year, the Eagles left no doubt. They pounded Hart County 48-20 and have yet to lose in the region. In two years since returning to Region 8-AAA, the Eagles are 14-1. They have a chance to finish undefeated in region play next week against Franklin County.
The Lions on the other hand had a chance to play for the region title but lost to Hart County on the road.
Alcovy earned its first playoff berth and will face the No. 4 seed from Region 1-AAAA. Right now that’s Thomas County Central.
The Tigers went up 14-0 in the first quarter and were never threatened. They struck again early in the third quarter and cruised to the easy win.
Alcovy was on the brink of making the playoffs last year. But a botched field goal attempt against Dutchtown ultimately left the Tigers on the outside looking in even after posting a 4-4 record in Region 4-AAAA.
Alcovy took care of that this year by beating Dutchtown on the road on a late-game touchdown by Tre Sorrells. At 5-2 in the region, the Tigers face the No. 1 team in the state in Griffin to finish the season next week. The finishing order is set so there is no bearing on the outcome of that game. Alcovy will be the fourth seed.
Newton still has a chance to make the playoffs with a win over Luella next week at home. The Rams lost to Luella last year and ultimately failed to make the postseason. At 4-3 in the region, the Rams would go in as the fourth seed after falling to Union Grove.
Union Grove finishes up with M.L. King. The Wolverines could move into the second spot with a win.
Newton would likely travel to face Region 3-AAAAA stalwart Camden County should they beat Luella.