Milton vs. Archer: Round Two
December 3, 2020
Last Friday Night, Milton faced the Lions of Peachtree Ridge in the first round of the GHSA State Playoffs. Milton easily took care of the Lions, winning by a score of 45-14.
Milton (10-0) advances onto round two to face Archer (8-4) back at The Nest. Last week, Archer defeated Gainesville by a narrow score of 21-14. The last time these two opponents met was in the 2018 rendition of Corky Kell Kickoff Game where Milton took the game by a score of 21-19.
The winner of this week’s contest will head on to face the winner of Lowndes/North Cobb, and the loser’s season will come to a devastating end
RB Renaldo Spivey Jr. (Sr)- 45 carries, 168 yards, 3 TD’s
WR Andrew Dyer (Sr)- 12 receptions, 153 yards, 1 TD
FS Caleb Wooden (Jr)- 36 tackles, 3 ints, 1 TD
(* Archer’s stat tracker only entered their stats for five games)
This season marks Archer’s 8th straight trip to the playoffs. Last year Archer advanced to the quarterfinals where they lost to Parkview by a score of 35-17. This year Archer started their season with three straight losses to Lowndes, Warner Robbins, and Grayson. The Tigers quickly rebounded with six straight wins before losing their final regular-season game to Norcross.
Leading the Tigers’ offense is Senior Quarterback Vashaun Stockmann. Stockmann specializes in delivering the deep ball to ignite that big play that the Tigers thrive on. Stockmann also has many weapons to throw to.
Archer’s lead running back is Senior Renaldo Spivey Jr. Spivey Jr is a strong downfield runner. Archer’s other back is Junior Chase Sellers. Sellers is more of a speed back who needs to get into space for a big run.
The Tigers leading receiver is Senior Andrew Dyer. Dyer is used on screens due to his speed and reliable set of hands. Archer’s next best receiver is DJ Moore Jr. Moore Jr. gets down the field quickly and pulls down the deep ball quite often with success.
Currently, Archer’s defense is letting up 16 points per game, a solid number but it will be tested with Milton’s offense that averages 33 points per game. Archer has a lockdown secondary that limits their opponents in passing yards as well as passing touchdowns. Archer’s front line looks to be the weaker part of the defense.
Leading the Tigers defense is Junior Safety, Caleb Wooden. Wooden is ranked as a three-star prospect with offers from Duke, Georgia Tech, and Louisville. In recorded games, Wooden has three interceptions. Senior Cornerback Edwin Mangual should have a big role in the game. In recorded games, he has ten tackles.
QB Devin Farrell (Jr)- 120/180, 1711 passing yards, 18 Total TD’s, 2 INT’s, 116.7 QBR, 98 carries, 556 rushing yards
RB Jordan McDonald (Jr)- 161 carries, 1109 yards, 23 TD’s
DE Lebbeus (LT) Overton (So)- 58 tackles, 30 TFL’s, 17 sacks, 6 forced fumbles
Last week, to no one’s surprise, Milton rolled past Peachtree Ridge. Milton’s offense has hit 40+ points for the third week straight and hopefully will show no signs of stopping. Milton’s defense had another great game, only letting up 14 points. Milton owned the game as soon as Jack Nickel got a scoop and score midway through the first quarter. The scoop and score seemed to ignite the Eagles all around and got them rolling.
Junior Quarterback Devin Farrell will make his 11th start this season and his 4th playoff starts in his career as an Eagle. Against Peachtree Ridge, Farrell completed 17 passes for 217 yards with a solo touchdown and finished with a QBR of 122.7. In addition, Farrell had 6 carries for 41 yards and two rushing touchdowns.
Junior Running back Jordan McDonald rushed for 65 yards on 18 attempts with two touchdowns. McDonald should have a productive game against Archer’s defensive front who have had troubles in slowing down Running backs. Sophomore Bryce Thronton saw some action at Running back, rushing for 19 yards on three attempts.
Junior Tight End Jack Nickel led the Eagles in receiving yards with three catches for 76 yards. Senior Daniel Black caught the lone touchdown on a 21-yard pass thrown from Farrell. Junior receiver Adam Freas had two receptions for 22 yards.
Milton’s defense had another spectacular game to no one’s surprise. One interesting note is the defense seems to play much better at home. At home, Milton has two shutouts, and the most points opposing teams have been able to score is 18 coming at the hands of Hapeville Charter. Defensively Milton will need to have another great game to stop the potent Archer air attack.
Junior Linebacker Dylan Miller led the team in total defense with seven tackles and one interception. Juniors Owen Pauley and AJ Crawford combined for seven total tackles. Senior Mason Bicknell had five tackles including one tackle for loss.
Leading the defensive line was Senior Dayne Edwards with eight total tackles including four tackles for loss and one sack. All three of Lebbeus Overton’s tackles came off of sacks including one caused fumble that was returned for a touchdown courtesy of Jack Nickel. Senior Brendan Doyle also had a strip-sack which led to a fumble recovery by Zack Tumminia.
The secondary was no doubt led by Junior Cornerback Cam Canion. Canion had three total tackles and one interception. Senior Garrett Smalley and Junior Zyere Horton combined for six tackles and one pass deflection.
Keys to Victory: Archer
If Archer wants to win this game, they are going to need terrific play on their special teams, something that has shown success this season. Archer also specializes in the deep ball connection with Stockmann and Moore Jr. Looking to the defensive side, Archer needs an interception or two from their ball-hawking secondary. The Tigers will also need to shut down McDonald and force Milton’s offense off the field.
Keys to Victory: Milton
For Milton the most important factor is to grind it out with Archer, meaning keep their defense on the field and wear them out physically. McDonald needs to have a big game running the ball to put this team in a winning position. Once the running game is clicking Milton can start to open it up through play-action pass, something Milton has specialized on this year. On defense, Milton needs to eliminate the big plays and put pressure on Stockmann. The Eagles need to do everything possible to not allow Archer to capitalize on special teams.
Both teams should be amped up going into the second round of playoff games. Going into the first half of play both teams come up with stops on defense as they get a feel for each other. Milton starts to grind out rushing yards on offense with McDonald at Running back and find themselves with a score early in the second quarter. Archer finds the endzone as well and ties up the game. Milton hits a field goal right before the half to find themselves with a narrow three-point lead heading into the half. Coming out of the half Milton grinds away more at Archers front line and scores a few more times as they extend their lead. Archer is also able to find the endzone once more, however, for the Tigers, it is too little too late and Milton comes off with a win and advances to the next round of playoff games.
Offensive Player of the Game: Jordan McDonald
Defensive Player of the Game: Dylan Miller