CULLMAN, Ala. – The first round of this year’s AHSAA high school state playoffs is in the books and three of the seven local contenders are advancing to the second round. Addison, Good Hope and Fairview will all travel Friday night as the Bulldogs take on North Sand Mountain, the Aggies square off against Ramsay at Legion Field and the Raiders face West Limestone.
(7-4) Addison at (10-1) North Sand Mountain
The Addison Bulldogs took on Colbert County in the first round of the Class 2A playoffs last Friday night and it turned out to be a low-scoring, but exciting affair. After the Indians tied it at 15 early in the final period, the Bulldogs got the ball and went on an amazing drive that took 8:46 off the clock and a Nelson Martin 3-yard touchdown run gave Addison the 22-15 win.
Their second-round opponent is the same team that knocked the Bulldogs out of the playoffs last season, the North Sand Mountain Bison, who shut out Southeastern last week, 19-0 to advance to this week’s game. The 20-13 loss to North Sand Mountain in the first round in 2019 is still in Addison’s mind and the Bulldogs would love nothing more than to eliminate the Bison from the postseason this time around. North Sand Mountain has put up 30 or more points in six games so far this season, so the Bulldog defense will definitely be tested once again.
The Bulldogs are averaging 30 points a game while allowing just 19 a contest, and the Bison are averaging 31 points a game and are allowing just 14. Addison is 2-3 on the road this season, but it will look to change that Friday night against no. 6-ranked North Sand Mountain. Their game plan against the Bison should be the same as last week: run the ball, burn a lot of time off the clock, and play really stout defense. If the Bulldogs can do all of those things, they will have an opportunity to move on to the quarterfinals
(10-1) Fairview at (11-0) Ramsay
The 10th-ranked Fairview Aggies took on Center Point in the opening round of the Class 5A playoffs last week and they played catch up for most of the game before launching a huge second-half comeback to defeat the Eagles, 27-22. The game-winning touchdown came on a trick play in which Parker Martin handed the ball off to Eli Speegle, who then tossed it to Bryson Chamness before he hit a wide-open Martin for the 19-yard game-winning score to help Fairview move on to the second round.
The Aggies will take on the no.1-ranked Ramsay Rams in the second round Friday night in the first-ever meeting between the two teams. Ramsay routed Lawrence County, 56-20, last week. The Rams’ offense has been tough to slow down so far as in all but one game, they’ve scored over 30 points. They hit the 40 and 50-point mark in four of their games this season, so the Fairview defense will have a tough task in front of it this week.
Fairview is averaging 30 points a game and allowing just 16 while Ramsay is averaging 36 points a game and has allowed just 12. In order to pull off the upset this week, the Aggies will have to continue to do what they’ve been doing all season: mix in the run and pass and get everyone involved offensively while the defense will need to play one of its best games of the season. If they can do that, they will have a great chance to punch their ticket to the quarterfinals.
(10-1) Good Hope at (10-1) West Limestone
The 10th-ranked Good Hope Raiders faced off against North Jackson in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs last Friday and they dominated the Chiefs as they rolled to a 33-8 win. They got a pair of touchdowns from Colton Bagwell and Tanner Malin and Eli Pugh added one on the ground as well. After allowing a touchdown in the opening quarter, the Raider defense shut out North Jackson’s offense the rest of the way.
Good Hope will travel to take on West Limestone in the second round of the playoffs Friday night. The Wildcats dominated Hamilton at home last week, 44-0. This will be the fourth meeting between both teams. The Raiders are 1-2 overall against the Wildcats and they last played against each other in 2007. Both teams have been hard to slow down offensively, as in all but five games, they’ve scored over 30 points, and they both feature stingy defenses as well.
The Raiders are averaging 32 points a game while allowing just 15 and the Wildcats are scoring 38 points a game while allowing just 18. Good Hope is 5-0 on the road and West Limestone is 6-0 at home, so this will be a must-see game for both teams. If the Raiders can continue to find success in the running game and stay strong of the defensive side of the ball, they’ll have a great opportunity to advance to the next round.
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