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Newton Rams football holds off Archer, preps for next Friday's playoffs
Newton Rams Football
Newton's Zion Johnson (6) fights off an Archer tackler during a first half run in the Rams' 19-11 win over the Tigers in Friday night's regular season finale. Newton will move on to play North Paulding next Friday in the first round of the Class AAAAAAA playoffs.

COVINGTON, Ga. — After clinching Class AAAAAAA playoff berth in last week’s win over South Gwinnett, the Newton Rams grabbed another victory on the back of a strong defensive performance.

The Rams finished their 2022 regular season with a 19-11 win over the Archer Tigers Friday night, giving it a feel-good victory ahead of next Friday’s playoff game. 

An Archer field goal sat alone on the scoreboard for the majority of the first half as both offenses traded punts and empty drives.

With three minutes left in the second quarter, the Tigers’ offense was pushed back deep in its own territory before having to punt.

Newton’s Keon Davis broke through the protection to block the punt and give the Rams’ offense the ball at the goal line.

On the next play, Newton gave the handoff to West Virginia commit Justin Benton, and the senior defensive lineman took the carry in for a Newton touchdown.

Following the missed extra point, the Rams went into halftime with a 6-3 lead.

Despite getting two interceptions off Rams quarterback Deron Benson, the Archer offense struggled to convert as Newton continued dialing up pressure on the Tigers’ quarterback.

The Rams opened up the game early in the fourth quarter when Benson connected with junior Marcus Calwise who eluded the majority of the Archer defense on his way to a 35-yard touchdown.

Benson would give the Rams another score late in the fourth when he found Keon Davis across the middle to make it a 19-3. Archer scored a final touchdown and 2-point conversion with under a minute left in regulation to provide the final score.

Newton put on a defensive clinic registering six sacks in the game and keeping Archer’s offense struggling to put drives together.

With the win, the Rams finish their 2022 regular season with a 6-4 record overall and a 3-2 mark in Region 4-AAAAAAA as they look ahead to the postseason with a No. 3 seed and a matchup at Region 3-AAAAAAA No. 2 seed Marietta (4-6, 3-1) next Friday.