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GHSA First Round Playoffs: Knights looking to take the sting out of the Hornets

Scouting the Hornets

The Roswell Hornets cruise into the playoffs winners of their last six games. This is the 10th straight playoff appearance for the Hornets. They are averaging 175 yards per game through the air and 247.4 yards per game on the ground. Quarterback K.J. Smith has thrown for 1.529 yards and 25-TDs while completing 67.9% of his passes. He’s joined in the backfield by running back Nykahi Davenport, who has rushed for 1,140 yards and 19-TDs. Davenport has also shown his versatility as a receiver, catching 17 passes for 224 yards and a touchdown. Dylan Williams (29 receptions, 532 yards, 12-TDs) and Synkwan Smith (27 receptions, 356 yards, 7-TDs) are the top receivers for the Hornets. Meanwhile, Roswell’s defense is allowing 11.4 points per game. Junior linebacker Ryder Duffy has recorded 93 total tackles while fellow linebacker Tyler Harrison has recorded 77 total tackles. The Hornets have sacked opposing quarterbacks 26 times. Jackson Schall leads the team with 6 sacks.

Scouting the Knights

The River Ridge Knights left no doubt on Friday night as they punched their ticket into the playoffs with a resounding victory over Allatoona. The Knights have won back to back games and are in the post season for the third time in four years. River Ridge is averaging 101.6 yards per game on the ground and 164.3 yards per game. Quarterback Ethan Spector has thrown for 1,731 yards and 21-TDs. His top receivers this season are Grant Hollier, Thomas Thompsen, and Sam Vincent. The trio has combined to catch 86 passes for 1,191 yards and 17 - TDs. Camden Cox has been the bell-cow for the River Ridge ground attack; he’s rushed for 807 yards and 7-TDs. Defensively Knights’ linebackers Brandon Burdette, Wyatt McCarty, Bryce Tomlinson and Will Hughes have made tackles all over the field. Nik Bryant has also come on late helping adding depth to the linebacking corps. Look for Andrew Hand and Reavis McLairen to help patrol the secondary.

Pundit's Pick

Both of these teams have shown propensity to light up the scoreboard. Roswell will need to keep the Knights defense off balance with a balance between Davenport’s running attempts and Smith’s passing attempts. Meanwhile, River Ridge will need to limit Roswell’s explosive plays and take care of the football, especially on the road. If River Ridge can win the turnover battle, we believe they can be in the game late, where anything can happen. However, Roswell is just a little too powerful, we like the Hornets by 20.

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