Etowah enjoyed a convincing 37-13 road win against River Ridge in Week 1, but it could not recover from an early deficit at North Cobb last week, falling 42-10.
On Friday, Etowah (1-1) will play its first home game of the season, facing an explosive South Forsyth team that came within three points of knocking off Class AAAA No. 1 Blessed Trinity last week. The War Eagles (1-1) scored 24 unanswered points in the fourth quarter but lost 34-31.
Etowah coach Dave Svehla said he knows what to expect when facing South Forsyth.
“I’ve followed that program for a while and I know they’re gonna be well-coached and physical,” Svehla said. “I think, offensively, they’re gonna try to bully us a little bit at the line of scrimmage and line up with two tight ends. They’ve also got an outstanding receiver -- a big kid -- and a quarterback who can get him the ball.”
South Forsyth will bring an offense averaging more than 400 yards per game, led by a duo of quarterbacks in senior Joe Slott and sophomore Kyle Durham. Durham exploded for 314 yards and two touchdowns last week against Blessed Trinity, with receivers Devin McGlockton (6-foot-7) and Cameron Schurr serving as the primary threats on the outside.
Tre Green enters the game as South Forsyth’s leading rusher, with 193 yards on 42 carries to go along with five touchdowns.
Dalton Miller, Etowah’s senior quarterback, enters Week 3 as Cherokee County’s leading passer with 427 yards passing through two games. Miller finished with 268 yards in last week’s loss to North Cobb and is averaging 214 yards per game.
Remington Adams was the Week 1 standout at running back for Etowah, but last week Kilvert Many asserted himself as the primary ball-carrier for the Eagles last week, finishing with 12 carries for 78 yards. Still, expect Adams to get touches as a dangerous playmaker for Etowah.
After playing an athletic North Cobb team last week, Etowah can expect another challenging defense according to Svehla.
“Defensively, (South Forsyth is) super aggressive,” Svehla said. “They’ll blitz a little bit, but it’s more about just how they get downhill in a hurry.”
Etowah possesses a number of pass-catching options, including Cherokee County’s second-leading receiver, Jackson Manns (12 rec., 176 yds., 1 TD) and tight end Stephen Palazzo (7 rec., 95 yds., 2 TD).
Etowah has averaged 339 yards of offense per game so far this season, but it suffered multiple turnovers last week against North Cobb. Cutting down on mistakes could prove vital against a talented South Forsyth team.
“We did some good things offensively last week,” Svehla said, “but none of that matters if you can’t score points.”