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Zion Johnson's big night against South Gwinnett punches Newton football's postseason ticket
Newton Rams Football
Newton Rams running back Zion Johnson races down the field on the third play of the game for a 72-yard touchdown. Johnson rushed for over 300 yards in the Rams' playoff clinching win at South Gwinnett Friday night. - photo by Garrett Pitts

SNELLEVILLE, Ga. — Newton's Zion Johnson ran wild for the Rams in their 24-14 win over Friday night at South Gwinnett — a win that clinched a spot for Newton in the Class AAAAAAA playoffs.

Consider this win sweet revenge for coach Camiel Grant, Jr.'s bunch. Last season, Newton lost to the Comets in the final week of the season to keep them out of the playoffs. The Rams were able to flip the script Friday night with a Region 4-AAAAAAA win on the same field.

Johnson played a big part in the Rams' triumph as the sophomore tailback created problem after problem for the Comets'  defense.

It took only three plays on offense for the Rams to score as Johnson took the carry straight through the middle of the South Gwinnett defense for a 72-yard house call.

Johnson went for another big gain of 55-yards on the next drive to help the Rams get into field goal range to go up 10-0.

Following the field goal, the Rams and Comets got into a defensive slug fest as the two teams traded punt after punt.

The Comets were able to convert after a blocked punt when quarterback Nathaniel Miller connected with Jaylin Lackey in the corner of the endzone for a touchdown.

Early in the second half, Johnson broke the Comets' defense once again when he went off on another big gain for 70 yards and a touchdown to move the Rams ahead by two scores.

Following a South Gwinnett touchdown to make it a three-point game, the Rams called on Johnson one more time, and the sophomore delivered as he and the rest of the Newton offense marched down the field, burning clock.

The game's final scoring drive ended with a Newton touchdown as the Rams called for defensive lineman Justin Benton to deliver the final blow near the goal line.

Johnson was, by far, the star of the game, finishing with 313 yards on 29 carries and two scores as the sophomore almost single-handily beat the Comets.

Benton played a pivotal role for the Rams in the win too, with three tackles for a loss and two sacks to go along with his offensive score.

Following the win, the Rams (5-4, 2-2) will be at home next week as they take on Archer in another region matchup Friday, November 4. But they'll do so with a ticket to the postseason already in hand.