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PREVIEW: Pinecrest Academy at Hebron Christian

Hebron's Seth Kuntz

Hebron's Seth Kuntz

PINECREST PALADINS (8-A)

Coach: Todd Winter

Record: 2-1

Last week: Beat Lakeview Academy 30-20

HEBRON LIONS (8-A)

Coach: Sal Battaglia

Record: 1-2

Last week: Lost to St. Francis 23-0

In some ways, last week’s loss to St. Francis symbolized what has been a roller-coaster season thus far for Hebron.

The Lions marched into the red zone on four consecutive possessions in the first half and could not find the end zone.

But while Sal Battaglia acknowledges that his young team needs to find a way to finish such drives, he’s hoping last week is a case of taking a step back in order to take two steps forward.

“It (is) part of the learning process,” Battaglia said. “We went up and down the field, but just couldn’t score. We’d run eight or nine plays, and then somebody jumps offside here or there would be a missed blocking assignment there. It was tough, but I really think we grew up a little.”

With a Pinecrest team on the upswing after two consecutive wins coming to town, the Lions will need several youngsters to grow up, especially with multi-talented senior receiver/defensive back/kicker Tyler Matthews likely out the next two weeks with an injury.

Among those who will be called on to fill in for Matthews’ big shoes are Cole Redman and Josh Heflin, while other experienced players like running back/tight end/linebacker Seth Kuntz will also be needed to provide plenty of leadership in Hebron’s first official region game ever.

Last meeting: First meeting

Directions to Hebron Christian Academy: From Ga. Highway 316, go north on Ga. Highway 8 approximately one mile and turn left at the traffic light onto Dacula Road (after passing Dacula High School on the left). Stadium is about a mile ahead on the right.