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The third Elite Junior showcase at Calhoun this past weekend was a success and there are just three more opportunities left for freshmen Class of 2018 thru current juniors Class of 2016 to join our tour throughout the state. Sign up for our remaining three locations HERE.
Today, we look at the GHSA's ruling on limiting full contact in practice and release the latest baseball rankings. 

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In This Issue

How many consecutive games has Crisp County baseball won?

Today's answer can be found in the newsletter!

Monday's Answer:
McCallie (TN) handed both Johns Creek and Allatoona lacrosse defeats this past weekend.





1. Parkview

2. Lambert

3. Walton

4. Kennesaw Mountain

5. Milton

6. Lakeside-DeKalb

7. Brookwood

8. Newnan

9. Archer

10. East Coweta



1. Starr's Mill

2. Gainesville

3. Union Grove

4. Greenbrier

5. Allatoona

6. Ola

7. Loganville

8. East Paulding

9. Stephenson

10. Richmond Hill


Class AAAA

1. Buford

2. Whitewater

3. Troup County

4. St. Pius

5. Locust Grove

6. Pike County

7. Wayne County

8. Crisp County

9. Perry

10. Thomson


Class AAA

1. Blessed Trinity

2. Pierce County

3. Jackson

4. Westside-Augusta

5. Jefferson

6. Westminster

7. Franklin County

8. Decatur

9. Oconee County

10. Central-Carrollton


Class AA

1. Wesleyan

2. Lovett

3. Benedictine

4. Greater Atlanta Christian

5. Bacon County

6. Darlington

7. Rabun County

8. Jeff Davis

9. Bremen

10. Thomasville


Class A

1. King's Ridge

2. Mt. Paran

3. Tattnall Square

4. Eagle's Landing Christian

5. Treutlen

6. Whitefield Academy

7. Charlton County

8. Brookstone

9. First Presbyterian Day

10. Providence Christian Academy


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Tuesday, April 14, 2015


GHSA sets limits on full contact practice

The Georgia High School Association on Monday set limits on full contact during football practices to follow safety guidelines recommended last summer by the national federation.

Photo by Jon Barash


The new rules, effective this fall, will limit full contact to 45 minutes per day and 135 minutes per week in preseason and then only 30 minutes per day and 90 per week in the regular season. Practices with full-contact drills cannot take place over three consecutive days. The rules were passed the GHSA's executive committee unanimously. (See the full guidelines at bottom.)


The GHSA's executive committee also voted to move the state-playoff basketball quarterfinals back to neutral sites beginning next year.


By Kyle Sandy

Parkview takes double-header over Brookwood

Parkview (18-2, 10-1), 6A's No. 1 ranked team, gained some separation in Region 8-AAAAAA after picking up a crucial win over No. 7 Brookwood (15-5, 8-3) last Monday, 7-1. Austin Biggar drilled a grand slam in the third inning to set the tone for the Panthers and help lift them over the Broncos. Will Ethridge tossed a complete-game while allowing one unearned run. The Broncos dropped to South Gwinnett last Wednesday but quickly rebounded with a 4-2 win over No. 9 Archer (15-6, 8-3) to pull into a tie for second place. No. 6 Lakeside-DeKalb enters the polls after ripping off nine-straight wins. Georgia State-signee Darius Sewell leads the Vikings with six homeruns and 27 RBIs.


Gainesville (15-4, 10-2) takes over the No. 2 spot in Class 5A after Greenbrier (15-2, 5-1) tumbles to No. 4 thanks to a 4-1 loss to South Forsyth (11-9, 7-5). The Red Elephants have picked up wins over No. 7 Loganville (15-4, 10-2) and Winder-Barrow (12-6, 8-4). On Friday in a 7-0 win over Winder-Barrow, Jonathan Gettys hit two homers and allowed just two hits in five innings pitched. Michael Curry also went yard for the Red Elephants, blasting a two-run homerun in the bottom of the sixth inning. A huge matchup looms in Region 4 as No. 3 Union Grove (16-1, 14-0) hosts No. 6 Ola (18-3, 7-2). Both teams are trying to keep pace with the top-ranked team in the state and leader of the region, Starr's Mill (17-1, 8-0). Both the Wolverines and Mustangs enter with team batting averages of .380. A.J. Spencer leads Union Grove with three homeruns and 24 RBIs while hitting .545. Ola counters with a slugger of its own in Carter Perkins who is hitting .523 with 29 RBIs.


2014 State runner-up Crisp County (13-5, 13-2) enters the polls riding an 11-game win streak. The No. 8 Cougars defeated Cairo (14-7, 12-5) 6-5 in eight innings last Wednesday. No. 1 Buford continued its dominance of Class 4A with a 12-0 shutout of Johnson-Gainesville (2-18, 0-11). The Wolves are now 19-2 overall and 11-0 in Region 8-AAAA. They have outscored region opponents 87 to 10 this season.


Westminster (14-7, 10-1), who has played one of the toughest schedules in the state this season, stays at No. 6 after falling to Class AA's No. 1 and No. 2 teams, Wesleyan (17-3, 7-1) and Lovett (15-3, 7-1), in consecutive games. The Wildcats have now played three of Georgia's top-ranked teams in their respective classifications (Buford, Blessed Trinity and Wesleyan).


In Class AA, the streaking Benedictine Cadets (16-4, 10-0) continue their rise in the poll and flip with No. 4 Greater Atlanta Christian (14-3-1, 4-1-1) to take ahold of the No. 3 spot. Last Tuesday Stevie Powers powered the Cadets to a 1-0 win over No. 8 Jeff Davis (12-6, 7-2). Powers struck out 10 in the complete-game win while hitting a solo homerun in the third inning to account for the only run of the game.


No. 1 King's Ridge (16-2, 10-1) saw its eight-game win streak come to a close last week when it fell to Archbishop Moeller (OH) 8-4. No. 3 Tattnall Square (17-1, 9-0) who suffered its first loss on April 3rd, earned a nice non-region victory over Class AAAA's No. 9 Perry (15-5, 8-0) 3-1. No. 5 Treutlen (15-3, 10-0) suffered a 3-2 loss to Hawkinsville (13-4, 6-2) last Monday in eight innings, but managed to get back on track with a 4-1 win over visiting Bacon County (15-3, 7-1), the No. 5 ranked team in AA. Brad Cammack hit a solo homerun and Tristan Cone pitched a complete-game one-hitter to carry the Vikings.



By Craig Sager II

Ryan raises over $90K with fifth Celebrity Am

Five years ago, Matt Ryan set up his first Celebrity Am with the Sports Networking department of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, with the agreement that half the proceeds would go to the Matt Ryan Foundation and the other half would go to the Aflac Cancer Center of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. Following the event and seeing first hand the type of impact this type of fundraising would have on young cancer patients, the Ryan Foundation sent its check to the Aflac Cancer Center. Now, for the fifth year, the Aflac Center received all the profits from the tournament, this time totaling over $90,000.


"Money can go in a lot of different directions, but in my personal opinion, there is no better place for your money to go than to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta," said Ryan


The event teed off with a 9:30 AM shotgun start as 29 fivesomes spread throughout Sugarloaf Country Club's three nine hole courses to compete for the lowest round of 18. With an 80 percent chance of rain in the forecast, we were warned to listen for a siren to tell us we needed to go in, but the rain nor the siren never came. Instead, a cool and misty April afternoon set up near perfect conditions on the well-groomed course that will host the Champions Tour's Greater Gwinnett Championship this week.


My father (Craig Sager) has played in Matt Ryan's tournament multiple years, but his recent relapse with leukemia kept him from participating in it this year. I am nowhere near the experienced golfer (or dresser) he is, but they knew how much this tournament meant to him each year and they allowed me to fill in. I joined a team that included Georgia Tech's all-time assist leader, Drew Barry, and nine-year NFL pro and former Atlanta Falcon Coy Wire, now CNN's Sports Correspondent.


The PGA-level course got the best of our group. Barry kept us as close to shooting par as he could in the modified scramble format. He was clearly one of the better golfers on the course today, but it was just not our day. We birdied three of the four par threes and Barry even stole a longest drive from former Georgia quarterback D.J. Shockley, but we could not even break par on the back nine and knew we had no shot at placing in the top 3 teams.


Before we had stepped on the course at 9:30 AM, Ryan had already been at morning workouts at Flowery Branch and even stopped by the range to get in a few practice cuts. He was definitely warmed up and he and four teammates; Brian Betkowski, Robert Amberg, Don Hallacy and Brian Mikes took first place.


"Never win your own tournament," joked event emcee and Falcons legendary play-by-play sportscaster Wes Duram.


The first place prize was a football autographed by Ryan himself that Ryan personalized and later gave to the tournament's youngest guest.


"Good teammates are always the key," smiled Ryan after holding up his prize. "I was able to get the muscles firing before hitting the course with our morning workouts so that helped too."


The event would not be complete without a look at the impact it has in the community and cancer survivor Justin Berry out of Hall County was the voice that shared his inspirational story.


"I thank God for Children's Healthcare of Atlanta," said Berry. "They saved me and were there to walk me and my family through it every step of the way."


Berry, a black belt, and avid runner, collapsed with a shooting pain in his leg last August. After several misdiagnoses, it was finally discovered that Berry had osteosarcoma in his tibia, bone cancer.


He took the podium to share the journey he took with Children's Healthcare of Atlanta once he found he had cancer.

Photo by Craig Sager II

Once the plan was set, Berry battled through seven months of chemo that contained the cancer to the point where his tibia could be reconstructed with a donation from a cadaver. Now, one bone transplant later, Berry was up on his feet in crutches and proudly showing off the scar that saved his life. Ryan handed Berry the personally autographed first-place football after his moving speech and also had an autographed baseball from Chipper Jones for him.


"Having done this for five years now and doing two events annually with different kids that can speak about the hospitals they've been at with Children's Healthcare of Atlanta puts this in perspective," explained Ryan. "It shows everyone why they are here today. Sure they are here to have a good time and meet people they are looking forward to seeing, but at the end of the day, it is about an organization that gives so much back. When we can come together and raise this much, it is very rewarding, but at the same time, you can never raise enough."


Ryan's annual events raise between $250,000-$300,000 for Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.






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