One team is firing on all cylinders, while the other squad is searching for a jump-start to the 2003 high school football season.
Augusta Christian School looked like a well-oiled machine in its 27-6 win last week at John Milledge Academy. The Lions improved to 3-1 and are now primed for a three-week run at Pride Valley.
Harlem, on the other hand, saw its record fall to 1-2 with a 40-12 home loss to Greene County on Friday night.
"We're struggling a little bit," Bulldogs coach Jimmie Lewis said. "We showed some promise against Greene County, and that's encouraging."
The Dogs were coming off a poor game at Elbert County, and starters Robert Jones, Donny DeMore and Jordan Whitaker were roughed up and unable to play against Greene County.
Augusta Christian, meanwhile, is healthy, and the Lions dished out some punishment in Milledgeville. Cole Rabun raced for a 65-yard touchdown on his first carry, and from there the Lions never looked back.
On defense, Dan Wiley intercepted two passes, and Andrew Fisher picked off another. In its three wins, AC has allowed just nine points.
"This is a veteran ball club, and the seniors have set some lofty individual and team goals," AC coach Bruce Lane said. "We're making progress each and every week. We haven't played our best game yet, but we're hoping each Friday night is better than the previous one. If that's the case, we'll be playing our best football at the end of the season."
Harlem didn't save the best for last Friday night. The Dogs trailed the Tigers 14-12 at the half, but the defeat was sealed with several miscues after the break.
"We had a good first half, and then we just messed up," Lewis said.
In the second half the Dogs committed a late-hit penalty to set up a score by Greene County, and on the ensuing kickoff Harlem fumbled the ball away, and the Tigers tacked on another TD.
On the bright side, senior Tim Camp was stellar on both sides of the ball. The senior quarterback sparked the Dogs offensively, and he led the team in tackling at his safety position.
Lewis isn't happy with his team's defensive effort, though, and he says that has to change when the Dogs travel to Warren County for this Friday's 7:30 p.m. matchup.
"What's killing us is lack of speed, and Warren County has some speed," Lewis said. "If we hem them up, I think we can beat them. We need a win, big time."
Augusta Christian needs a win over Brentwood Academy this Friday night, but for different reasons.
"I'd be very surprised if our kids weren't focused," Lane said. "They take pride in playing well at home, and we've lost to (First Presbyterian Day) and Tattnall in our last two home games. The kids are ready to right that ship."
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