Yet, the two Cobb private schools have never met on the gridiron — until now.
Mount Paran will host Whitefield for their first meeting in a crucial Region 6A (B) game tonight.
The game begins what could become a spirited rivalry between the two local Class A teams, who are playing in the same region for the first time.
Whitefield coach Jimmy Fields is looking forward to play the Wolfpack’s new rival for the first time.
“We’re very excited,” Fields said. “We’re in a new region, Region 6. We’ve played for the last several years in Region 5, and Mount Paran has been in Region 6. We’re excited to be in the same region with Mount Paran. They have a great program and coach (Mitch) Jordan has done a great job building a competitive and well-respected program there.”
Jordan is also eagerly anticipating the matchup.
“It’s going to be a good rivalry,” he said. “Whitefield has done a good job getting their program to the next level. Coach Fields runs a good program over there. We’ve competed with them in a lot of other sports, but this is the first time in varsity football. It should be a great atmosphere for both teams.”
Both coaches believe that the game between their teams could become the biggest game on their schedules every year.
“Any region game is a rivalry, but being in the same county makes it more special,” Fields said. “Both teams are relatively new programs in the Atlanta metro area and it has the makings of a good rivalry.”
Whitefield (3-2, 1-0) has won three of its last four games and has scored more than 40 points in all three of its victories — including a 43-14 win over Fellowship Christian.
It’s an especially important game for Mount Paran (1-4, 1-0), which beat King’s Ridge Christian 21-13 in its subregion opener last week after losing its first four games of the season.
“We put ourselves in a hole the first four games,” Jordan said. “Every game is important from here on out. Whitefield is an important and I told my kids we have to take it one game at a time.”
Mount Paran will have to find a way to slow down Whitefield’s Richard Sherrell, who has led the Wolfpack’s offense, running for 505 yards and six touchdowns, including a 166-yard, and one-touchdown performance against Fellowship Christian.
For Jordan, containing Whitefield’s option offense is among the challenges that Mount Paran faces.
The Eagles have gotten plenty of production from running back Kyle Trammel, who has rushed for 532 yards and four touchdowns.
Fields said Mount Paran record is misleading and he expects a tough game that could go down to the end of the fourth quarter.
“Two things — they’re very physical and well-coached,” Fields said. “Don’t let their record fool you — they’ve played some pretty good opponents. They may be one of the best 1-4 teams in the state of Georgia. Their record is no indication of how good they are.”