Coming off a bye, Harrison will look to remain unbeaten and clinch the Region 6AAAAAA title with a win over Sequoyah on Friday at Cobleigh Stadium.
This season, The Hoyas (8-0, 6-0) have been in only a single game that has been decided by less than 18 points. The trend of dominant victories continued two weeks ago, as they shut out Osborne 44-0.
Harrison is the only team in the region that has not allowed a total of 100 points this season. Offensively, it is second in the region with 318 points, trailing only Dalton (340), which the Hoyas held to 21 points in a blowout win in late September.
“It’s nice to lock (the region) up in case you have any injuries so you can rest them, but we’re still focused on finishing the region strong,” Harrison coach Matt Dickmann said. “We’re just talking about one game at a time. Let’s take care of business Friday.”
For Sequoyah (5-3, 4-2), its playoff hopes will be on the line when it makes the trip to Harrison with an upset in mind.
The Chiefs will enter the game fifth in the region, with only the top four making the playoffs. Having already dropped games to Dalton and Creekview — two of the teams ahead of them — and their final two matchups remaining against the region leaders Harrison and Allatoona, winning at least one of those games is a must.
“We knew, once we lost to Creekview, that kind of put us behind the 8-ball a little bit,” Sequoyah coach James Tetter said. “We need help from people. If we could somehow take care of business this week and next week, then we really put ourselves in a lot better shape than most people understand.”
The Chiefs have done most of their damage this season on the ground out of the Wing-T, passing for only 609 yards through eight games. Six players have over 100 yards rushing, led by Jaden Mitchell, who has 721 and five touchdowns.
Stopping the run is a strength of Harrison’s defense, and the Hoyas had two weeks to prepare for the ins and outs of a Wing-T attack.
“It’s good to have two weeks when you’re going to play Sequoyah because they run the true Wing-T,” Dickmann said. “They can be pretty tricky. You’ve got to stay home and look for counters. We’ve worked on anything we do against a team that does a lot of counters or trapping.”
Harrison features three of the top 10 tacklers in Cobb County in Marcus Bleazard, Ryan Smith and Caleb Williamson — a trio who will be tested against Sequoyah’s running attack.
“They pursue the ball really well,” Teter said of the Harrison defense. “They make it really tough for people to run the ball on them and, unfortunately, that’s what we do.”
Normally, it might be a good opportunity for Sequoyah to throw something new at Harrison to try and counter the Hoyas’ strengths on defense, but injuries and inexperience make that a challenge.
“We’ve been banged-up so much all year long along our front on both sides that we can’t do a lot of new wrinkles,” Teter said. “The reason we’ve done so well the last three weeks is that we just stayed basic, and that’s kind of what we’ll do again this week.”