There were three high school football games in DeKalb County Thursday night and one had all the looks of a major upset for the better part of three quarters.
M.L. King vs. Dunwoody
Monquavious Johnson threw for 284 yards and four TDs to rally the Class AAAAA #3 ranked M.L. King Lions from a 17-13 third quarter deficit to a 40-17 win over the Dunwoody Wildcats Thursday night at North DeKalb Stadium.
Fans in the stadium and watching on WSB-TV saw a winless (0-6) Wildcat team control most of the game’s first three quarters in what was shaping up to be a huge upset.
Dunwoody took the early 7-0 lead on a three-yard run by Aaron Alexander. The TD was set up by Alexander’s 44-yard run to the Lion three-yard line. Hayes Davidson added the PAT with 9:03 left in the first quarter.
The score was 7-0 heading into the second quarter before the Lions got on the scoreboard when Johnson connected with DeMarquis Polite-Bray on a 73-yard pass play with 5:32 left in the half. The PAT was wide and the score was 7-6 Dunwoody.
Dunwoody’s Chase Hawkins then fielded a short kick at his own 18-yard line and raced 82 yards to the end zone. Davidson’s PAT made it 14-6 with 5:16 left in the half.
The first half scoring wasn’t over, though, as the Lions’ Jaquise Williams returned the ensuing kickoff 72 yards to the Dunwoody 12. Two plays later Johnson found Donald Clark in the end zone for the score. Yannick Kra’s PAT made the score 14-13 Dunwoody with 4:15 to play in the half.
The two teams exchanged fumbles in the final 1:56 of the first half on the Lions’ side of the field with M.L. King taking over on their own six-yard line with 1:30 to play.
A 47-yard run by the Lions’ big FB Jamel Smith out to the Dunwoody 46 put King in position to get more points before the half ended. But the Wildcat defense held on second and goal at the six as DB John Isaacs-Hyliger stepped in front of a Johnson pass at the goal line with five seconds to play.
In the second half, Dunwoody capitalized on a Lion fumble recovered by Charlie Beausoleil at the M.L. King 33. The Wildcats used a halfback pass from Alexander to Tylor Scales for a 24-yard gain to the Lions’ 9-yard line. M.L. King’s defense stood its ground, though, and forced a 22-yard FG by Davidson as Dunwoody increased its lead to 17-13.
The Lions answered right back, though, as Smith bulled into the end zone from four yards out with 5:15 left in the third quarter to give M.L. King the lead for good at 20-14. Kra’s PAT was good.
M.L. King (6-0) took a 26-17 lead into the fourth quarter as Johnson connected for a second time with Clark for the score, this time from 20 yards out.
Spencer Williams added an 18-yard run with 7:06 to play and Johnson connected with Polite-Bray on a 35-yard pass play with 3:41 to play to make the final 40-17.
Polite-Bray finished with 144 yards receiving and two TDs on five catches while Clark had four receptions for 65 yards and a pair of TDs.
Miller Grove vs. Lakeside
In other Thursday night action in DeKalb, Miller Grove (5-1) defeated Lakeside (1-5) 62-17 at Adams Stadium in another Region 6-AAAAA tussle.
The Wolverines face a tough four-game stretch to end the season with #4 Stephenson, #2 Tucker, SW DeKalb and #3 M. L. King (6-0) yet to be played.
Arabia Mountain vs. Mays
Arabia Mountain (1-5) dropped a Region 6-AAAAA game 30-15 to Mays (3-3) at Panthersville Stadium. Mays held a narrow 10-7 lead at the half before pulling way in the third quarter.
Friday and Saturday Games
There’s a lot more football to be played in DeKalb County this weekend, including a tremendous match-up at Hallford Stadium between Class AAAAA #2 Tucker and #4 Stephenson. Here’s a list of the Friday and Saturday night games:
Friday, October 12
McNair (3-2) vs. Cedar Grove (4-2), Panthersville, 7:30 p.m. (HC)
Chamblee (5-0) vs. Columbia (2-3), Avondale, 7:30 p.m.
Lakeview Academy (2-2) vs. Cross Keys (0-5), North DeKalb, 7:30 p.m.
Newton (1-4) vs. Druid Hills (2-3), Adams, 7:30 p.m. (HC)
Lithonia (1-4) at Marist (4-1), 7:30 p.m.
Tucker (5-0) vs. Stephenson (4-0), Hallford, 7:30 p.m.
Towers (0-5) at Woodward Academy (4-2), 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, October 13
Johnson-Gainesville (3-3) vs. Clarkston (2-4), Hallford, 7:30 p.m. (HC)
Redan (1-4) vs. Stone Mountain (1-4), Avondale, 7:30 p.m.
Southwest DeKalb (3-2) vs. North Atlanta (0-5), Georgia Dome, 5 p.m.
Check back Sunday for results of these games.
Get out and enjoy some high school football this weekend, everyone!