Trinity Christian survives double overtime to reach state title game

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From Staff Reports

Survive and advance, a common cliche’ used during playoff times in sports. It applied to the top-ranked Trinity Christian Lions on Friday night in high school football action.

It took two overtimes and an entire night of playing catch up, but the visiting Lions found a way to dispose of perennial power Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy, 48-45. The victory punched Trinity Christian’s ticket into the GHSA 1-A Private State Championship on Thursday as a rematch of last year’s title game with Prince Avenue Christian awaits. 

Quarterback David Dallas found Aaron Gates for the winning touchdown in the 2nd overtime after ELCA (7-7) had to settle for a field goal on its possession. The Lions, now 13-0, trailed a total of five different occasions in regulation during Friday’s semifinal contest. 

Overall, the game was tied six times, including a 14-14 deadlock at halftime, 28-28 at the end of the third quarter and 35-35 at the end of regulation. In fact, the fourth quarter ended with a bang as ELCA’s Charlie Gilliam scored on a 31-yard TD run with only 1:31 remaining. However, a personal foul against the Chargers was applied on the ensuing kickoff, giving Trinity Christian good field position to start its game-tying drive. Dallas connected with Bryce Wilcox on a 40-yard TD pass with only 31 seconds left to tie the game and send it to overtime.

Head coach Kenny Dallas and his Lions’ victory sets up Thursday’s GHSA 1-A Private State Championship Game against the Prince Avenue Christian Wolverines, a 38-28 winner over Fellowship Christian last night. Prince Avenue, now 13-1, defeated Trinity Christian 41-21 in last year’s 1-A Private Championship. The game will kickoff at 5 p.m. in Georgia State’s Center Parc Stadium (formerly Turner Field). Tickets are $20 and can be purchased at https://gofan.co/app/school/GHSA. According to the GHSA website, tickets will not be sold at the stadium on the day of the game.

Both Trinity Christian and Prince Avenue have had four common opponents this year – Athens Academy (TC won 59-7, PA won 49-13), Athens Christian (TC won 48-14, PA won 44-15), Brookstone (TC won 55-14, PA won 52-0) and Fellowship Christian (TC won 56-20, PA won 38-28).

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