Habersham Central Raiders (8-AAAAAA)
Coach: Benji Harrison
Record: 5-4, 3-2 region
Last week: Beat Central Gwinnett 62-14
Shiloh Generals (8-AAAAAA)
Coach: Tino Ierulli
Record: 3-6, 2-3 region
Last week: Beat Lanier 20-17 in overtime
Playoff implications ride on the last Region 8-AAAAAA game of the season, which will be played Saturday afternoon because of a busy week for Habersham, which defeated Central Gwinnett in a makeup game Tuesday night.
Habersham (3-2 region) sits alone in third place in the region behind region leaders Buford and Dacula, who are locked into the top two seeds for the playoffs. Shiloh (2-3) and Winder-Barrow (2-3) are a game behind, while Lanier (1-4) also is still in the playoff mix. Lanier and Winder-Barrow's result Friday will factor into the playoff hopes of the Generals, who sparked their postseason chances with a comeback win last Friday.
They trailed Lanier by two touchdowns before rallying in the second half and pulling out a win in overtime. Antonio Meeks continues to lead the Shiloh offense, while wide receivers Xavier Wright (who shares quarterback time with Meeks) and Myles Smith also have been playmakers. Ahmand Tate and Christian Culbreth are among the offensive linemen playing well of late.
Linebacker Isaac Prince and Montae Boyd and Brice Pollock in the secondary are among the standouts on defense, which got a huge boost recently with the return of defensive lineman Ladanian Smith.
Shiloh is close to full strength for the regular-season finale after a run of adversity.
"Against Dacula, we had 10 starters out and that killed us," Ierulli said. "Since the second half of the South Gwinnett game, we've been down four to 10 starters a game. Never in my 24 years of coaching have I seen this before. We tell the boys to fight through adversity, and we've had to do that as coaches, as players, as a program. I can't say enough about the younger guys who stepped up who had no varsity snaps at all before."
When: Saturday, 2 p.m.
Last meeting: First meeting
Location: Shiloh High School