Several Cobb County football programs found the truth in that Friday as some unheralded players came through when it mattered.
For Kell, Jamari Moore and Khalil Bell both stepped up from their normal roles and came out of the shadows of highly recruited teammates Brendan Langley, Quincy Mauger and Taylor Henkle.
Moore carried the ball 17 times for 156 yards. Bell accounted for 84 yards and three. Entering the game, Bell had just six touchdowns on the season.
Walton’s D.J. Smith is being recruited by nearly every SEC team, but with all the attention given to Alabama commitments, running back Tyren Jones, quarterback Parker McLeod and Georgia commitment offensive lineman Brandon Kublanow, he might not get the recognition he deserves.
Smith rose to occasion Friday when the junior two-way starter at defensive back and wide receiver caught a 27-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter and was all over the field making plays for the Raider defense. He also had one carry for 40 yards.
Smith’s strong game came at a time when Jones was held to just over 100 yards and a touchdown.
At Marietta, KirVonte Benson stepped up with a 168-yard rushing effort and two touchdowns, including a 75-yard run in the third quarter. LSU-bound Anthony Jennings, who usually leads the Blue Devils, was held to 68 rushing yards.
Hillgrove’s Richardre Bagley’s breakout game also came Friday night. The junior broke his leg during the second week of the season and made his return against Harrison. Bagley ran 78 yards on nine carries, caught two passes for 112 yards and finished the game with three touchdowns.
“We’ve just been waiting to get him back,” said Hillgrove coach Phil Ironside. “It was pretty good that he was back on the field.”
Allatoona found out it had a kicker that could perform under extreme pressure.
Nate Shaw’s impressive night couldn’t have come at a better time. He entered the game with just one made field goal, but added two in a 20-17 overtime victory over Hiram. Shaw booted a 25-yard game-winner in overtime for just the third field goal of his career.