Milton Football Season In Review

December 24, 2021

Milton, GA- When I sat down to write my closing article for the 2020 Milton Eagles Football team, I ended it by saying “in 2021 Milton should expect a deep run in the playoffs and maybe even a State Championship victory”. While Milton fell short of the ultimate goal, what a season it was for the 2021 Milton Eagles.

Season Recap

After a hard battle with the Coronavirus last season, everyone in the community was amped up for what was in store for this year’s teams. Multiple preseason polls had the Eagles highly ranked not only in 7A but also in the state of Georgia. Additionally, the Eagles returned a hefty amount of talent on both sides of the ball and nearly every coach came back.

Milton had quite the non-region stretch facing a multitude of the best teams in the nation. Milton opened up the 2021 campaign with a 45-0 win over Hapeville Charter.

A week later Milton would travel to Kennesaw to face North Cobb on ESPN in which many thought would be a preview of this year’s State Championship. In a wacky game filled with weather delays, Milton suffered their first loss of the season by a score of 40-21.

However, Milton would quickly regroup going into the Freedom Bowl where they would play Virginia’s top team: Life Christian Academy. Milton just gave it to LCA securing a big 34-14 win against the nation’s elite.

The following week the Eagle’s would take a long bus ride to Philadelphia to take on nationally-ranked St. Joseph’s Prep to play one of the biggest games in the history of the Milton football program. After a back-and-forth game, the Eagle’s came out on top with a 28-21 win. Milton made history by being the only team from Georgia to beat a team from Pennsylvania.

Two weeks later Milton would make a return visit to Cobb County to take on McEachern where Milton ran away with the game-winning 42-29.

Milton would then open up region play facing the rival Alpharetta Raiders. As per the usual Milton blew out the rival Raiders by a score of 55-28 going on to 1-0 in the region.

The following week Milton would travel to Woodstock to face Etowah. Milton overpowered Etowah winning 54-14 and setting up a big game in two weeks with Roswell.

After a bye week, Milton would take on Roswell in one of the most historic rivalries in the state of Georgia. Milton quickly settled in and carried the momentum all the way to the end to beat Roswell 44-34; now Milton controlled their own destiny in the region.

The next week the Eagle’s showed no signs of stopping by completely dismantling Woodstock at home in a record-setting performance winning 68-7.

Milton would then play in a region championship against Cherokee to determine a number one seed in the playoffs. Once again Milton quickly had the game under wraps thanks to a great rushing performance and winning 42-14. Milton secured their fourth straight region title. Additionally, Milton has gone four years without losing a region game.

It was now playoff time for the Eagle’s as they would welcome in the Duluth Wildcats. Like so many games before Milton completed dominated an inferior opponent going on to win 45-14 and advancing to the next round.

In the second round, Milton would then take on #3 seed Marietta. Milton would go on to defeat Marietta by a score of 38-21 and advance to the quarterfinals.

Thanksgiving football is what so many high school coaches dream of but that dream was now a reality as the Eagle’s would welcome in #2 seed Mill Creek. Milton would finally get Mill Creek to break, and the Eagle’s would run away with the game, winning 36-27.

Milton would now go onto the semifinals to play the Cinderella’s of this year: the Walton Raiders. The Eagle’s would overcome an early deficit and win the game by a score of 52-17, earning the Eagle’s a birth in the State Championship to face Collins Hill.

Now it was time for the State Championship against a premier program in Collins Hill. Milton would be looking for their second State Championship in four years if they could come out with a win. Going into the game, the Eagles would have to quell the high-powered Collins Hill offense and take advantage of scoring opportunities. Milton did a tremendous job silencing the Collins Hill offense only allowing seven points at the half and keeping it a game. However, Collins Hill did a nice job scheming around Milton in the second half, coming up with 24 points compared to Milton’s eight at the end of the game.

Awards

The fact that Milton even made it to the State Championship is enough to celebrate. Many consider Georgia 7A football to be some of the best and most competitive football in the nation and it is quite the gauntlet to play in a State Championship. As previously mentioned, Milton secured a fourth straight region championship setting a 7A record for most consecutive region titles. In the region stretch, Milton also compiled a perfect record against rivals Alpharetta and Roswell. Milton spent most of the year within the 20’s on Maxpreps national rankings and will finish at #30 nationally, #3 in Georgia and #2 in 7A.

Many Eagle’s found themselves making the Region 5 7A first and second teams as well.

Region Player of the Year- RB Jordan McDonald

Defensive Player of the Year- S Bryce Thornton

Athletes of the Year- QB Devin Farrell

Coach of the Year- Adam Clack

First Team All-Region- WR Debron Gatling, TE Jack Nickel, FB Elliot Meyer, OL Brandon Best, OL Mo Clipper Jr., OL Tyhler Williams, DL AJ Crawford, DJ LT Overton, DL Giles Tchio, LB Zyere Hornton, LB Owen Pauley, S Robert Billings, CB Cam Canion

Second Team All-Region- WR Brooks Bortle, WR Adam Freas, OL Kayden Richardson, LB Dylan Miller, LB Caleb Moran, CB Brayden Holmes, K Felipe Mota, LS Ben Lowery

What’s Next

Milton will graduate a total of 24 seniors, with 11 players receiving offers to play at the next level. This senior class has been one of the most talented classes if not the most talented class in Milton history. However, Milton returns a multitude of players with scholarship offers and players looking to get offers. Once again Milton should be looking at yet again another region championship and a deep run in the playoffs for next year’s team.

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