Several PHS varsity football players were selected to be on the 7-AAAA All-Region Teams. In total, 18 Dragons were on the list between 1st team, 2nd team, & Honorable Mention.
Six Dragons were selected to the 7-AAAA All-Region 1st team. They include:
Walker Lawrence- TE/H-Back
D.J. Walden- C
Ty Chastain- K
Andrew Ortiz- DL
Kyle West- LB
Marcus Byrd- P
Four Dragons made it to the 7-AAAA All-Region 2nd Team. They are:
Chris Pittman- RB
Zach Betts- OL
Alex Pittman- DL
Dillin Eilers- LB
8 Dragons were included on the 7-AAAA All-Region Honorable Mention List. These Players are:
Nick Southern- DL
Zack Hermann- DB/WR
Caleb Brooks- DB/WR
Avery Luke- DB
Will Wotring- DB
Bradley Ragano- TE
Andrew Hasbrouck- OL
Cortlin Norton- OL/DL
Congrats to these young men on this accomplishment and a great season.
This past Friday, the PHS varsity football team traveled down to Atlanta to take on region 6-AAAA’s #2 seed and #8 4A ranked Marist War Eagles in the 1st round of the GHSA 4A State Playoffs. Pickens, went into the ball game looking for their first ever playoff win as this was the first meeting between the two schools.
Marist won the toss and elected to receive to start the ball game. As the War Eagles were driving towards mid field, the Dragons defense forced a fumble and game the offense good field position to start their opening drive. The War Eagle defense was able to stop the Pickens offense and give the ball back to their offense. Marist found the first points of the game after a 2-yd td run at the 5:54 mark to take a 7-0 lead. Chris Pittman got the Dragons on the board after a 41-yd td run giving us a 7-7 tie going to the 2nd quarter.
In the 2nd quarter, both defenses made it very difficult for either offense to get anything going. Ty Chastian connected on a 27-yd field goal for the Dragons at 3:10 mark giving Pickens a 10-7 lead. The War Eagles marched down the field using their triple option offense looking to tie or take the lead before the half. Marist called timeout with 2 seconds left in the half looking for a game tying field goal. The Dragons were able to apply pressure and block the field goal attempt sending us to the break with Pickens ahead, 10-7.
As was the story for the majority of the 1st half, the 3rd quarter was dominated by defense as both teams made it tough for the other to find any rhythm on offense. The War Eagles were able to take the lead with the only points of the quarter getting in the end zone with a 1-yd run giving Marist a 14-10 advantage going to the 4th and final quarter.
In the 4th quarter, The War Eagles stretched their lead with scores at the 10:52, 8:00, & 3:55 marks using a 3-yd run, a 48-yd run, and a 20-yd pass respectively to make it 35-10 Marist. The Dragons found the end zone at the 2:18 mark after a 46-yd td run from Marcus Byrd making it 35-17 War Eagles. Marist was able to recover the ensuing onside kick and score the game’s final points after a 44-yd td run with 26 seconds left giving us a 42-17 final. The War Eagles will now play Mary Persons in the 2nd round.
Pickens finishes the season at 8-3. This was the first time the Dragons were in the playoffs back to back seasons since ’04 & ’05 & had back to back 8-win seasons for the first time in school history. The senior class leaves tied for the most wins by a class with 27 wins.
On the night, the Dragons finished with 10 1st downs, went 4/14 on 3rd down & 2/2 on 4th down, had 286 total yards of offense, ran it 44 times for 216 yards and threw it 11 times for 40 yards.
Marcus Byrd led the Dragons in rushing with 121 yards on 12 carries & 1 td, Chris Pittman had 82 yards on 16 carries and a touchdown.
Defensively, the Dragons recovered a fumble, had 6 TFL, recorded 1 sack, & blocked a field goal attempt
Dillin Eilers led Pickens in tackles with 12, 4 solo, 8 assists, Kyle West finished with 11 total tackles, 8 solo, 3 assists, 1 sack, & 2 blocks, & Will Wotring finished with 10 total tackles, 7 solo, 3 assists, 3 TFL, a fumble recovery, & a pass break up.
Byrd punted it 6 times for a total of 235 yards, a 39.2 yard average, & landed 2 inside the 20 yard line
Hunter Golden returned 4 kicks for 101 yards and Dillon Gasaway returned 1 kick for 21 yards
Ty Chastain went 2/2 on PAT’s & 1/1 on field goals with a long of 27
For the season, the Dragons averaged 25.73 ppg, and gave up 19.09 per game, had 150 1st downs (13.6 a game), went 47/130 on 3rd down, & 11/24 on 4th down, collected 3,683 yards of offense (334.8 per game) on 636 plays (57.8 average), ran for 3,169 yards on the season (288 per game) on 531 plays (48.3 a game) for an average of 5.96 yards per rush. Dragons finished with a season total of 514 passing yards on 105 plays.
Marcus Byrd finished the season 30/64 passing for 333 yards and 3 tds while Jacob Brumby finished 20/40 for 181 yards
Chris Pittman led the Dragons in rushing finishing with 1,335 yards on 227 carries (5.9 yard average), and 18 tds, Byrd finished 771 yards on 106 carries (7.3 yard average) and 6 tds, & Dillon Gasaway ended the season with 505 yards on 86 carries (5.9 yard average) and 4 tds.
Walker Lawrence was the leading receiver on the season with 142 yards on 13 catches followed by Hunter Golden with 12 catches for 106 yards, then Bradley Ragano with 6 catches for 100 yards.
Defensively on the season the Dragons forced 22 total takeaways, 14 fumbles and 8 INT’s, had 751 total tackles, 68.5 TFL, 16 sacks, 13 forced fumbles, 30 pass break ups, and 6 blocks
Dillin Eilers led the Dragons in tackling this season with 110 total tackles (57 solo, 53 assists), followed by Kyle West with 85 total tackles (54 solo, 31 assists), & Jacob Gordon finished with 77 total tackles (48 solo, 29 assists)
Avery Luke led the team in INT’s with 4, Alex Pittman led the way in sacks with 4, Lawrence & A. Pittman led the team with 2 forced fumbles, Gordon, Lawrence, & A. Pittman tied for the team lead in fumble recoveries with 2, Caleb Brooks & Zack Hermann led the team in pass break ups with 6, & Cortlin Norton led the team with 3 blocks.
Byrd punted it 31 times for a total of 1,298 yards, a 41.9 yard average, a long of 58, & 10 inside the 20 while C. Pittman punted it 14 times for a total of 514 yards for a 36.7 yard average, a long of 53, & 4 inside the 20
Hermann led the team in punt return yards with 120 on 8 returns followed by Brooks with 117 yards on 8 returns
Gasaway led the team in kickoff return yards with 186 on 7 returns followed by Brooks with 185 yards on 6 returns, then Golden with 101 yards on 4 returns
On the season Ty Chastian went 35/36 on PAT’s, a 97.2% accuracy rate, & 10/12 on field goals, 83.3% rating, & a long of 42 yards.
Last night, the PHS Varsity football team made their way up 515 to take on their bitter rival, the Gilmer Bobcats. This match up was important not only for bragging rights but both teams fighting for playoff positions. Pickens came in having already clinched a spot in the playoffs while Gilmer was looking to stay in the hunt for a possible 3 or 4 seed.
The Dragons won the toss and decided to receive to start the ball game off. A couple botched plays led to Pickens having to punt away to the Bobcats. Gilmer would not be able to find any points either as we went into the 2nd quarter tied at 0. At the 6:55 mark of the 1st half, the Bobcats grabbed the first points of the game with a field goal to go up 3-0. The Dragons would come right back as Chris Pittman found the end zone from a yard out at the 4:06 mark giving Pickens the 7-3 lead. The Dragon defense held off Gilmer near the end zone in the closing seconds of the half and denied them a field goal giving us a 7-3 Pickens lead going to the break.
Chris Pittman would help add on to the Pickens lead in the 3rd quarter as he rumbled 76-yards down the field and scored two plays later from 4-yds out giving the Dragons a 14-3 advantage with 4:52 left in the quarter and we would head to the 4th and final quarter with that same score. Pittman again found pay dirt for the 3rd time, this one from 8-yds out with 8:04 left in the ball game. Another long Pittman run helped set up a Marcus Byrd 14-yd td to stretch the lead to 28-3 with 2:50 left in the game.
Gilmer tacked on a late touchdown after a 20-yd pass & catch with 41 seconds left. The ensuing 2-pt try was no good giving us a 28-9 score. Pickens then would fall on the onside kick and run out the clock taking this one over the Bobcats, 28-9 to improve their overall record to 8-1 and move their region record to 5-1.
On the night, Pickens had 10 1st downs, went 3/8 on 3rd down, racked up 386 total yards on 41 plays including 346 of those yards coming via the run.
Marcus Byrd went 1-4 passing for 23 yards & Jacob Brumby went 2-2 for 14 yards
Chris Pittman led the way in rushing on the night with 220 yards on 16 carries and 3 tds with a long of 76-yds, Byrd finished with 101 yards on 12 carries and a score with a long of 53-yds
Defensively, the Dragons held Gilmer on two redzone stands, blocked a field goal, forced a fumble, & picked off two passes
Leading Pickens in tackles was Dillin Eilers with 16 total, 9 solo and 7 assists, Jacob Gordon & Cortlin Norton each had 10 total tackles, & Avery Luke finished with 9 total tackles, and 2 INT’s
Chris Pittman punted it 5 times for 184 yards for a 36 yard average and Ty Chastain went 4/4 on PAT’s
Next Week, the Dragons will host the 9-0 & #2 ranked Purple Hurricanes of Cartersville. This game will determine the Dragons seeding in the upcoming playoffs. A win gives them the #1 seed and a region title. If Cartersville wins, Pickens will most likely be the #3 seed and have to travel in the 1st round.
Last night, the PHS Dragons varsity football team hosted the Generals of Heritage in another crucial 7-AAAA region game. On a night where the newest class of the PHS Athletics Hall of Fame and the 8th grade middle school championship football team were honored, the Dragons looked to clinch their 2nd straight playoff berth with a win over the Generals.
Pickens won the toss, electing to differ to the 2nd half giving Heritage the ball first. The Generals tried to catch the Dragons off guard with a trick play on the opening kickoff but, Pickens didn’t fall for it and Heritage had to start deep inside their own territory as a result. The Generals were able to march down the field however and got into the end zone after a double pass taking the 7-0 lead with 8:58 left in the opening frame. The Dragons answered the Generals score with a 1-yd Chris Pittman touchdown run to tie things up at 7 as we went to the 2nd quarter.
Both teams went back and forth defensively in the 2nd quarter as the only scoring came at the 5:34 mark when Ty Chastain knocked a 42-yd field goal through the uprights giving Pickens a 10-7 lead at the break. In the 3rd quarter, Chris Pittman found the end zone for the 2nd time on the night at the 3:17 mark as he put the Dragons ahead 17-7 going the 4th and final quarter.
Early in the 4th, with the Generals backed up deep in their own territory, the Pickens defense forced a safety with 11:34 left in the ball game stretching the lead out to 19-7. After getting the ball back on the ensuing kickoff, the Dragons marched down the field and Chris Pittman found pay dirt for the 3rd time making it 25-7 with 9-13 left in the game. Heritage did not go quietly as they connected on a 33-yd screen pass for a touchdown at the 6:01 mark cutting it it 25-13. Kelton Gilbert got in on the action as the Sophomore running back scampered 27-yds for the touchdown making it 32-13 with 3:29 left in the game.
The Generals found the end zone at the 1:06 mark after a 1-yd pass but could not convert the two-point try giving us a score of 32-19. The Dragons were able to fall on the ensuing onside kick and ran out the clock to seal the win, 32-19. With the win, Pickens has clinched a playoff berth and are now 7-1 on the season & 4-1 in region play.
On the night, Pickens had 18 1st downs, went 6/13 on 3rd down, and 1/1 on 4th down, ran 69 plays for a total of 422 yards, ran for 366 yards on 63 rushes & threw for 56 yards on 6 passes.
Marcus Byrd went 3/4 passing for 45 yards & Jacob Brumby went 1/2 for 11 yards
Chris Pittman ran it 28 times for 119 yards and 3 tds, Marcus Byrd ran it 12 times for 95 yards, Dillon Gasaway ran it 7 times for 53 yards, & Kelton Gilbert ran it 5 times for 69 yards and a touchdown
Bradley Ragano led the Dragons in receiving with 21 yards, Caleb Brooks had a catch for 15 yards, Zack Hermann caught 1 ball for 11 yards, & Walker Lawrence reeled in 1 catch for 9 yards
Defensively, Pickens forced one fumble, recovered a fumble, recorded a sack, and forced several hurries and broke up 6 passes on the night.
Dillin Eilers led the Dragons in tackles with 11, 9 solo & 2 assists, Will Wotring finished with 5 total tackles, 1 solo, 4 assists, Caleb Brooks, Jacob Gordon, Avery Luke, Cortlin Norton, & Alex Pittman each finished with 4 total tackles
Chris Pittman punted it 5 times for a total of 171 yards for a 34.2 yard average, a long of 50, and left 2 inside the 20-yd line
Caleb Brooks returned 1 punt return for 22 yards and 1 kickoff for 32 yards while Michael Casey returned 1 kickoff for 21 yards
Ty Chastain went 3/4 on PAT’s & 1/1 on field goal attempts with a long of 42 yards
Pickens will travel to Ellijay to take on the Bobcats of Gilmer next week in the annual 515 rivalry match up. Gilmer is 3-5 on the season & 2-3 in region play and fighting for a possible 3 or 4 seed in the playoffs. Pickens, is hoping to stay in the hunt for the 2 seed.
Last night, the Pickens varsity football team hosted the LaFayette Ramblers in a 7-AAAA match up. The Dragons were finally back home after nearly a month on the road and looked to build off of their road win against Southeast Whitfield last week. The Homecoming crowd would not be disapppointed.
Pickens won the toss and differed to the 2nd half giving LaFayette the ball first. After the defense made a stand, Chris Pittman scored the 1st of his 2 rushing touchdowns with 9:40 to go in the 1st quarter. The other score came with 33 seconds left as the Dragons took a 14-0 lead into the 2nd quarter
The Pickens defense and punt return teams continued to give the Dragon offense great starting field position in the 2nd quarter. This quarter offensively belonged to Dillon Gasaway, who found the end zone twice on touchdown runs. The first one came from 5-yds out at the 11:24 mark stretching the Pickens lead to 21-0. The 2nd Gasaway touchdown run came from 6-yds out at the 1:11 mark giving us a halftime score of 28-0 Dragons.
During the intermission, Homecoming Maid of Honor & Queen were crowned. Hunter Harrington was named Maid of Honor & Kerrie Lee was named Homecoming Queen for the 2015-16 season.
In the 3rd quarter, the Pickens running game continued it’s strong performance as Dillon Gasaway found the end zone from 32-yds out for his 3rd score of the game making it 35-0 Dragons with 9:04 left in the 3rd quarter. Freshman Trevon Hawkins got in on the scoring as he plowed through from 2-yds out making the score 42-0 Dragons with 6:57 left in the 3rd. Ty Chastain then tacked on a 42-yd field goal giving Pickens a 45-0 lead going to the 4th.
Ten seconds into the 4th quarter, Hawkins again found pay dirt. This time, from 35-yds out giving the Dragons a 52-0 lead. The Pickens defense shut out the Rambler offense and the Dragons took this one 52-0. Pickens is now 6-1 on the season and now in 2nd in 7-AAAA at 3-1.
On the night, the Dragons collected 14 first downs, went 4/9 on 3rd down, & 1/2 on 4th down. Pickens 55 total plays for 408 yards including 356 yards coming on the ground and 7 touchdowns. Defensively, the Dragons forced 4 turnovers (3 fumbles & 1 INT), & held the LaFayette offense to 83 total yards.
In spot start duty, Jacob Brumby went 6/10 for 52 yards passing
Dillon Gasaway led Pickens in rushing with 147 yards on 12 carries, a 12.3 ypc average & 3 touchdowns, Trevon Hawkins finished the night with 103 yards on 11 carries for a 9.4 ypc average & 2 touchdowns, & Chris Pittman added 63 yards on 9 carries for a 7 ypc average and 2 touchdowns.
Hunter Golden led the Dragons in receiving on the evening with 3 catches for 25 yards while Walker Lawrence added 21 yards on 2 catches
Kyle West led Pickens in tackles on the night with 7 total 3 solo, 4 assists, and 1 fumble recovery, Dillin Eilers had 6 total tackles 4 solo, 2 assists, 2 TFL, & 1 INT, & Jacob Gordon added 6 total tackles 5 solo, 1 assist, & 1 forced fumble. Austin Massey & Nick Southern also had fumble recoveries.
Chris Pittman punted twice for 72 yards a 36 yard average, with a long of 37 & 1 inside the 20
Zack Hermann returned 4 punts for 68 yards a 17 yards average with a long of 33 yards
Caleb Brooks took 1 kickoff return back 38 yards
Ty Chastain was 7/7 on PAT’s & 1/1 on field goals with a long of 42 yards
Pickens again will be home next week as they host the Generals of Heritage, Catoosa in another key 7-AAAA game. Heritage is 4-3 on the season & 2-2 in region play.
Last night, the PHS varsity football team traveled to Dalton to take on the Raiders of Southeast Whitfield in a crucial 7-AAAA match up. The Dragons came into the ball game with a 4-1 overall record and 1-1 in region play looking to bounce back after a tough loss to Northwest Whitfield the week prior.
Pickens won the opening toss and elected to differ to the 2nd half giving the Raiders the first chance at points. It would not take long for Southeast to do just that as Tyler Brown found room on the right side of the defense and got in from 79-yds out. The PAT was missed however giving the Raiders a 6-0 lead with 10:18 left in the opening quarter. Dillon Gasaway burst through for a 43-yd run on the Dragons possession setting up a 1-yd Chris Pittman touchdown. Ty Chastain’s PAT attempt sailed through and true giving Pickens a 7-6 lead with 8:58 left in the opening frame. Chastain added a 27-yd field goal to make it 10-6 Dragons as we went to the 2nd quarter.
Chris Pittman found the end zone from 8-yds out at the 7:41 mark of the first half giving the Dragons a 17-6 lead. After a Caleb Brooks INT, Chris Pittman got past the defense and into the end zone from 19-yds out for his 3rd score in the 1st half stretching the lead to 24-6 with 1:52 to go in the 2nd quarter. The Raiders cut into the lead just before halftime after taking an INT 61-yds to the end zone. A successful two-point conversion gave us a halftime score of 24-14 with Pickens still ahead.
In the 3rd quarter, The Dragons defense swarmed the Southeast offense on every play. The 3rd quarter ended as it began with Pickens on top, 24-14. In the 4th, Dillon Gasaway made his way into the endzone from 2-yds out giving the Dragons a 31-14 lead with 9:01 remaining in the ball game. The defense shutout the Raider offense in the 2nd half giving us a final of 31-14.
Pickens finished the night with 14 first downs, 4/9 on 3rd down, 0/1 on 4th down. Ran 53 total plays for 312 total yards including 284 yards rushing on 46 attempts. The defense picked off a pass, forced 2 fumbles, & had 3 sacks on the night.
After taking over QB duties due to injury, Jacob Brumby finished 3/7 for 28 yards
Chris Pittman carried the ball 21 times for 152 yards and scored 3 td’s while Dillon Gasaway finished with 117 yards on 17 carries and a td
Leading the way for the Dragon defense were Kyle West, who finished with 11 total tackles, 8 solo, and 3 assists, Jacob Gordon chipped in 9 total tackles 5 solo and 4 assists, & Caleb Brooks who ended the night with 6 total tackles, 3 solo, 3 assists, 1 TFL, and 1 INT
Due to injury, Chris Pittman took over punting duties and punted twice for 87 yards, a 43.5 yard average, a long of 53, and landed 1 inside the 20
Ty Chastain finished 4/4 on PAT’s and 1/1 on field goals with a long of 27 yards
Pickens will finally be home after a 3-week road trip as they will host LaFayette in another 7-AAAA region match up. Next week will be Homecoming for PHS as there will be a week filled with activities and events. Pickens is 5-1 on the season and are tied with Heritage for 3rd place in the region 2-1. LaFayette is 1-5 on the year and 0-3 in region play.
This past Friday, The Dragons varsity football team traveled to Tunnel Hill to take on the Northwest Whitfield Bruins in a key 7-AAAA region match up. Pickens came into the ball game at 4-0 (1-0 in region), and were looking for their first 5-0 start since 1986.
Pickens won the toss but elected to differ to the 2nd half giving the Bruins the first crack at putting points on the board. The Dragons defense wasted little time making their mark on the game as they forced a turnover inside Bruin terrritory. Not to be outdone, NW Whitfield’s defense forced a turnover on downs giving it right back to their offense. The Bruins found the end zone at the 6:48 mark of the opening quarter after a 5-yd pass but could not convert the PAT and Pickens found themselves down 6-0 after one quarter of play.
The Dragons offense got going at the 7:21 mark of the 2nd quarter after a 15-yd pass from Marcus Byrd to Zack Hermann tied things up and a Ty Chastain PAT made it 7-6. With 8 seconds left in the 1st half, Chastain added to the Pickens lead with a 27-yd field goal making it 10-6 with the Dragons getting the ball first to start the 2nd half. In the 3rd, the Bruins took the lead back at the 7:45 mark after a 16-yd run making it 13-10 as we headed to the 4th.
NW Whitfield added to their lead at the 9:05 mark in the 4th with a 15-yd run making it 20-10. The Bruins tacked on two more scores in the quarter at the 3:16 & 1:13 marks. Byrd tossed a 6-yd touchdown to Caleb Brooks with 15 seconds left in the game giving us a final score of 33-17 Bruins. NW Whitfield is now 4-2 on the season and 2-1 in region play while Pickens is 4-1 and 1-1 in region.
Pickens had 15 first downs, were 5/14 on 3rd down, & 0/2 on 4th down, collected 311 total yards on 63 plays including 273 of those yards coming on the ground
The Dragons defense forced three fumbles and secured all three
Marcus Byrd was 5/10 on the night for 38 yards and 2 touchdowns while adding 120 yards rushing on 13 carries
Chris Pittman finished with 90 yards on 28 carries, & Dillion Gasaway had 45 yards on 10 carries
Zack Hermann led the Dragons in receiving with two catches for 34 yards and a touchdown
Defensively, Kyle west led the way with 13 total tackles, 7 solo, 6 assists, 1 TFL, and 1 sack, Walker Lawrence finished with 9 total tackles, 5 solo, 4 assists, 1 TFL, and two fumble recoveries, while Hermann had 8 tackles on the night
Byrd punted 5 times for a total of 230 yards for an average of 46 yards per punt
Ty Chastian hit 2/2 PAT attempts and went 1/1 on field goal attempts
The Dragons will conclude their three week road trip next week when they travel to Dalton to take on the Raiders of SE Whitfield. The Raiders are coming off of a 35-0 win over LaFayette and are 4-2 on the season and 2-1 in region play.
Last night, the Pickens Dragons football team made the long trip to Rossville, Ga to take on the Ridgeland Panthers in the opening game of 7-AAAA play for both teams. Last year, the Panthers won a back and forth game inside Dragons Stadium and in the last three meetings, were 2-1 against Pickens. The Dragons looked to turn that around in this one.
The Dragons received the opening kickoff and Caleb Brooks nearly took it back as he set up the offense with good field position at the Panther 28-yd line after a 53-yd return. During the opening drive, Marcus Byrd completed two passes to Hunter Golden for 13 yards, then stretched across the goal line after a 7-yd run putting the Dragons up 7-0 with 10:39 left in the 1st quarter. After the Pickens defense forced and recovered a fumble, the offense looked to add to the lead. However, a tipped pass was taken by the Ridgeland defense all the way to the end zone to tie things up at 7 with 8:37 to go in the quarter.
Chris Pittman found pay dirt from 6-yds out for his 6th rushing touchdown of the year giving Dragons the lead back 14-7 as we headed to the 2nd quarter. Defense dominated the 2nd quarter as both teams only managed field goals in the frame. Ty Chastain tacked on 3 from 37-yds out at the 10:32 mark giving Pickens a 17-7 lead. The Panthers got their field goal as time expired in the first half giving us a 17-10 score as we went to the break.
The third quarter was controlled by defense as neither team was able to get points of any kind. Plenty of excitement still remained as the 4th and final quarter of play rolled around with the Dragons still leading it, 17-10. Ridgeland, using their running game, got down to the goal line of Pickens looking to tie things up late in the game. The Dragons defense held strong and stuffed the Panthers at the 1-yd line. Pickens punted it back to Ridgeland, and had one last shot to send this one into overtime. With under 20 seconds left, the Panthers pass was picked of by Avery Luke to seal the win for the Dragons 17-10.
For the game Pickens had 9 1st downs, went 4/11 on 3rd down, & 1/2 on 4th down. Dragons finished with 196 total yards on offense on 47 plays, including 180 yards rushing. The Pickens defense, along with 2 takeaways, stopped the Ridgeland offense on several key drives.
C. Pittman led the Dragons in rushing with 81 yards on 18 carries and a touchdown while Byrd added 40 yards on the ground on 10 carries and a touchdown
Dillin Eilers led Pickens in tackles with 18 total tackles with 6 solo and 12 assists, Kyle West added 16 total tackles with 12 solo tackles and 4 assists, & Avery Luke chipped in 10 total tackles with 6 solo, 4 assists, & the game preserving INT
Byrd punted it 4 times for 175 yards with a 43.8 yard average
Brooks added 59 yards in return yardage including the 53-yd return on the opening kickoff
Chastain went 2/2 on PAT’s and hit a field goal for 37-yds
With the win, the Dragons now improve to 4-0 on the season and now find themselves in a three-way tie with Cartersville and Heritage for the top spot in the region standings at 1-0. Next week, Pickens will make the trip up to Tunnel Hill, Ga to take on the Bruins of Northwest Whitfield. The Bruins are 3-2 on the season and 1-1 in region play after an early season loss to Southeast Whitfield 21-12 and shutting out LaFayette 24-0 last night.
Last night, the Dragons varsity football team played host to the Knights of Johnson-Gainesville in what was the final non-region game for Pickens. This was the 14th time these two schools have met with the Dragons leading the all-time series, 7-6 and winners of three straight. Prior to kickoff, Tucker Green and Sydney Romine would be named Mr. & Miss PHS.
Pickens won the toss but elected to differ to the 2nd half, giving the Knights the ball to begin the game. Both teams struggled offensively as both defenses played well in the 1st quarter. A Ty Chastain 36-yard field goal proved to be the only points scored in the opening frame as the Dragons took a 3-0 lead into the 2nd quarter.
Much like the 1st quarter, defense was the story in the 2nd quarter. With 37 seconds left in the 1st half, Marcus Byrd found the end zone with a 20-yd run stretching the Pickens lead to 10-0 over the Knights as we headed to the break. The Dragons got the first crack in the 2nd half, looking for more points.
However, the Knights defense played tough and held the Pickens offense scoreless. At the 4:46 mark in the 3rd, Chris Pittman was able to bust through past the defense on the 1 yard line giving the Dragons a 17-0 advantage. 1:22 later, Darian Bunch scampered 73 yards for the touchdown cutting the Dragon lead to 17-7 with 3:24 to go in the 3rd.
As the 3rd quarter came to a close, Pickens had the ball moving looking to punch it in. Just 6 seconds into the 4th, C. Pittman got in for his 2nd score after a 6-yd run to the left side to make it 24-7 Dragons with 11:56 left in the ball game. The Knights would not go quietly however as Cody Long found pay dirt from 9-yds out cutting it to 24-14 with 5:03 left in the game. The defense for Pickens stepped up when it had to and the offense ran out the clock giving the Dragons a 24-14 win, moving them to 3-0 on the season.
The Dragons collected 17 first downs, were 4/13 on third down, and 2/5 on 4th down. Pickens racked up a total of 376 yards on 67 plays, 271 on the ground and 105 through the air. Defensively the Dragons were able to recover two fumbles and had two sacks.
Offensively, Marcus Byrd was 7/13 for 105 yards passing while adding 72 yards rushing on 15 carries and a touchdown
Chris Pittman led the Dragons in rushing with 119 yards on 23 carries and 2 touchdowns
Walker Lawrence had 2 catches for 36 yards, Zack Hermann caught 2 passes for 24 yards, Hunter Golden had 2 catches for 20 yards and Bradley Ragano caught 1 pass for 25 yards
The Dragons held the Knights offense to 165 total yards. Jacob Gordon led the way with 18 total tackles, 11 solo, 7 assists, 1 TFL, and a fumble recovery, Dillin Eilers added 16 total tackles, 7 solo, 9 assists, 1 TFL, and 1 sack, while Avery Luke had 8 total tackles, 6 solo & 2 assists
Byrd punted two times for 75 yards with a long of 46 yards
Ty Chastain went 3/3 on PAT’s and 1/2 on field goals with a long of 36 yards
Pickens finishes the non-region portion of their schedule at 3-0 with the 2nd season set to begin next week. The Dragons will be on a 3-week road trip to start region play with the 1st game being at Ridgeland on the 25th.
Last night, the Pickens Dragons varsity football team traveled to Gainesville to take on the Vikings of East Hall. These two teams played last season in Jasper with the Dragons taking it. Pickens looked to build off their hard fought victory last week over White County.
The Vikings won the toss and elected to receive. With help from a pass interference called on 3rd down, East Hall found the end zone on their opening drive but missed the PAT to lead it, 6-0 with 8:34 left in the 1st quarter. After picking off a pass from Marcus Byrd in Dragon territory, the Vikings added to that lead with a 22-yd run and 2-point conversion making it 14-0 with 5:01 remaining in the opening quarter. The Dragons got their first points of the game on a Chris Pittman 3-yd run cutting the Viking lead in half 14-7 as we’d head to the 2nd.
Pickens tied things up at 14 just 5 seconds into the 2nd quarter with C. Pittman finding pay dirt from 5-yds out. After being backed up deep into their own territory, East hall connected on a 95-yd pitch and catch to take the lead right back 20-14 with 8:03 left in the 1st half. Ty Chastain cut that lead in half with a 38-yd field goal as we went into the break with the Vikings leading the Dragons, 20-17.
Byrd gave Pickens the lead for the first time in the ball game after a 55-yd run making it 24-20 Dragons with 10:22 left in the 3rd quarter. Caleb Brooks took it from 18-yds and found the end zone on a sweep play stretching the Dragons lead to 31-20 with 4:10 to go in the 3rd. 3rd time was indeed a charm for C. Pittman as he got in from 9-yds out at the 1:43 mark in the 3rd giving Pickens a 38-20 lead.
Trevon Hawkins made his mark on the game in the 4th as he scampered 13-yds for the score making it 45-20 Dragons with 5:08 remaining in the game. East Hall got their final score of the game at the 4:04 mark in the 4th after a 64-yd pass and catch making it 45-28 Pickens. Hawkins added a 2nd score of the quarter, this one from 20-yds giving us a final of 52-28.
Pickens had 24 first downs, went 5/12 on 3rd down and 3/5 on 4th down ran 77 total plays for 591 total yards with 517 of those yards coming on the ground. The Dragon defense forced 3 turnovers, 2 interceptions and 1 fumble.
Marcus Byrd went 6/12 for 74 yards passing and added 124 yards rushing on 12 carries and 1 touchdown
Chris Pittman ran it 27 times for 224 yards and 3 td’s, and Trevon Hawkins added 37 yards on 4 carries and 2 touchdowns
Defensively, Will Wotring lead the way for Pickens with 10 total tackles with 7 solo and 3 assisted while Jacob Gordon collected 9 total tackles, 5 solo, 4 assisted, 2 tackles for loss, 1 interception, and 1 fumble recovery
Byrd punted once for 55 yards, Brooks had 47 punt return yards on 3 attempts, and Dillon Gasaway lead the kick return yards with 45
Ty Chastain went 7/7 on PAT’s and 1/1 on field goals with a long of 38
The Dragons will be on a bye next week but will be back in action and at home on Friday, the 18th as they host the Knights of Johnson, Gainsville
Last night, the Dragons varsity football team opened up the 2015 regular season in the friendly confines of Dragons Stadium against the White County Warriors. Coming off of a win in their scrimmage game against River Ridge two weeks ago, Pickens looked to open up the season with a big win. Last year in Cleveland, Ga, the Dragons beat the Warriors in a shoot out to open 2014.
White County won the toss but elected to defer to the 2nd half meaning the Dragons would get the first chance to put points on the board. After a good kickoff return, the Dragons were unable to find the endzone. The Warriors used the Wing-T/Triple Option offense to slow down the pace of play but as the 1st quarter ended, there would be no score from either team.
As the 2nd quarter of play moved along, White County believed they had the first score of the ball game. A penalty negated that score, and we remained deadlocked at 0. The first score of the game came at the 4:14 mark of the 2nd quarter as Ty Chastain booted a 40-yd field goal through the uprights to give his team a 3-0 lead. Pickens took that 3-0 lead into halftime over the Warriors.
Penalties and stalled drives hindered both teams in the 3rd quarter until the Warriors’ Caleb Crane was able to hit pay dirt from 7-yds out. A missed PAT gave White County a 6-3 lead with 2:51 left in the 3rd. Pickens found it’s most sustained drive as they headed to the 4th, looking to reclaim the lead.
Just 35 seconds into the 4th and final quarter of play, quarterback Marcus Byrd hit the open hole on the left side and found the endzone to give the Dragons a 10-6 lead with 11:25 left in this one. Chastain added his 2nd field goal of the night with 1:35 to go to make it a 13-6 game. The Warriors had one final drive to try and tie things up, but the Pickens defense came up big and forced a turnover on downs allowing the offense to run out the clock giving the Dragons a 13-6 victory.
First Downs: Pickens 11 White County 7
3rd Downs: Pickens 6/14 White County 3/12
4th Downs: Pickens 1/2 White County 0/2
Total Yards: Pickens 244 White County 149
Total Plays: Pickens 54 White County 47
Rush Yards: Pickens 244 White County 23
Pass Yards: White County 126
Total Takeaways: Pickens 2 White County 0
Offensive leaders for Pickens: Byrd 60 yds rushing on 10 attempts and 1 touchdown, Chris Pittman 157 yds rushing on 31 attempts
Deffensive leaders for Pickens: Dillon Eilers 10 tackles, 1 sack, Kyle West 8 tackles, 1 TFL, Nick Southern & Andrew Ortiz 7 tackles each
Special Teams: Byrd 5 punts for 191 yards and 2 inside the 20, Caleb Brooks 3 punt returns for 42 yards and a kick return for 21 yards, Dillon Gasaway 1 kick return for 55 yards
Ty Chastian: 1-1 on PAT’s 2-3 on field goals with a long of 40 yards
Pickens will look to build off this hard nosed win and prepare for the first road test of the season, a match up with the Vikings of East Hall next Friday while White County will get ready for their home opener against Jackson County.
Last Friday night, the Pickens High School football team traveled to Woodstock to take on the 5-A River Ridge Knights. The Knights are a former region foe of the Dragons and the Dragons were victorious the last time these teams squared off. River Ridge won the toss and elected to receive the opening kick. The Dragons defense wasted little time making an impact as Caleb Brooks came up with the interception and almost took it back the other way.
PHS would have to settle for a Ty Chastain field goal however as they went up 3-0 with 8:42 remaining in the 1st quarter. Chris Pittman then would add to that lead for the Dragons as he muscled his way in from 3-yards out to give his team a 10-0 advantage with 5:51 still remaining in the opening quarter. One of the main things to work on early in the season is penalties and it would be some costly penalties by the Dragon defense that would lead to a River Ridge field goal making it 10-3 with 2:27 left in the 1st quarter. As the opening frame came to a close, Dillon Gasaway got in to the end zone from 21-yards out to stretch the lead to 17-3 after one quarter.
The only scoring in the 2nd quarter would be a 1 yard run by the Knights to cut the PHS lead to just 7, 17-10, with 3:15 remaining in the first half. The Dragons were able to pick off River Ridge for the 2nd time in the opening half, but were unable to do anything with it and took a 17-10 lead into the break. The Dragons started the 2nd half with the ball as Michael Casey nearly took the kickoff to the house. Chris Pittman took it in for his 2nd score of the night giving PHS the 23-10 lead with 11:32 left in the 3rd quarter.
To the Knights credit, they came right back and scored on a 58-yard touchdown pass to cut the lead to 23-17 with 10:39 to go in the 3rd. Dylan Huffman scored on a long touchdown run of 39 yards to bring the Dragon lead back to double digits 30-17 with 2:08 left in the 3rd quarter. PHS then secured it’s third interception of the game just before the 3rd quarter came to a close and looked to add more to their score. Just 7 seconds into the 4th quarter, Freshman Trevon Hawkins got in from 10-yards out, adding to the Dragons lead, 37-17 with 11:53 to go in the game.
Hawkins added a 2nd touchdown run, this time from 3-yards out giving the Dragons a 44-17 lead as that ended up being the final for this scrimmage.
The Dragons will now prepare and work on things for the season/home opener against non-region opponent, White County. This opening game will be on the 28th of this month at 7:30 at Dragons Stadium.
A big week for Pickens High School football started when the JV Dragons defeated Lumpkin County last Thursday 41-34 to finish the season at 6-1 and capture the league championship. Friday night, the varsity Dragons traveled to Catoosa County to take on the Generals of Heritage in what was a crucial game for both teams’ playoff hopes. The Dragons came in with a 3-1 region record, while the Generals had a 2-2 region record. It had been 3,275 days since the Dragons last appearance in the state playoffs, that number would fall to 0.
The Picken High School Dragons football team hosted the Raiders of Southeast Whitfield at Dragon Stadium. Coming into this ball game, the Dragons was 4-1 overall and 1-1 in the region while the Raiders was a perfect 5-0 and 2-0 in region play. The Dragons, coming off of a big home win against Northwest Whitfield, looked to continue that momentum and drop the Raiders from the ranks of the unbeaten. The game was the Homecoming at PHS which would only add to the excitement of the night. The Dragons’ offense scorched the Raiders to the tune of 62 points as Pickens picked up the 62-40 win over SEW.
Last Friday, the Dragons hosted the Bruins of NW Whitfield at Dragon Stadium in a region showdown. The Dragons looked to even up their region record at 1-1 after losing a close game to Ridgeland the week prior. Before the ball game, the JYSA football players, coaches, and cheerleaders were recognized in front of a packed house as Dragon Nation would envoke a pink out in honor of breast cancer awareness month. The Bruins would win the toss and would differ to the 2nd half giving the Dragons first crack at putting points on the board.
Last Friday, the Dragons hosted the Panthers of Ridgeland High School in what was the region opener for both teams. Prior to kickoff, Mr and Miss PHS for 2014-15 were crowned as Andrew Haygood and Emma Shipley-Schmitt would reign supreme. Coming into the ball game, the Dragons was reigning over opponents, scoring 43 ppg and giving up only an impressive 16.7 ppg during their 3-game winning streak. Pickens looked to continue that trend as the Dragons welcomed a Panther squad that is primarily run oriented. The Panthers pulled out the victory, 35-28.