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PREVIEW: South Gwinnett at Dacula

South Gwinnett's #74 Daniel Ziegler

South Gwinnett's #74 Daniel Ziegler

South Gwinnett Comets (8-AAAAAA)

Coach: John Small

Record: 1-1

Last week: Beat Duluth 37-21

Dacula Falcons (8-AAAAAA)

Coach: Jared Zito

Record: 0-2

Last week: Lost 24-22 to Collins Hill

Two losses, one loss, unbeaten, none of that matters with the start of region play.

Last year, Dacula rode its win over South to six straight wins and into the second round of the state playoffs. At South, the loss ended playoff hopes. This year, the game comes earlier, but the stakes remain the same.

“What they did non-region, what we did non-region really doesn’t matter,” South head coach John Small said. “This week starts a new season.”

The Comets head to Dacula riding a win over Duluth last week were South withstood a third-quarter rally.

“I was really proud of our kids last week, they played hard and we have something to build off of going into region play,” Small said. “When it got to be 22-21, I think our kids picked it up about four notches.”

The underrated play for the Comets came from the offensive line, which gave quarterback Jordan Ramey much more time than he had against Norcross the first week. Senior starter Daniel Ziegler led the way.

“(He) played the best game he’s ever played,” Small said. “He is continuing to improve and just had a heck of a game and is a great leader.”

For the Falcons, region play is a chance to reset from an 0-2 start and ride the momentum of a strong second half against Collins Hill.

“The fourth quarter (against Collins Hill) was the first time, probably since the scrimmage that I really saw us playing with confidence and playing with some enthusiasm,” Dacula head coach Jared Zito said. “We are excited about the fact that we were better in a lot of areas and it all comes down to starting this Friday for the next eight weeks.”

Last meeting: Dacula won 22-20 last year

Directions to Dacula High School: From Highway 316, go north on Highway 8 approximately one mile and school is on the left.