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Playoff preview: Mount Airy (4) vs.  Hayesville (12)

Mount Airy looks to end Hayesville’s Cinderella playoff run when Nov. 18 rolls around.

Despite finishing fourth out of five teams in their conference, the Hayesville Yellowjackets find themselves in the third round of the 1A State Playoffs. Hayesville’s seven wins this season are tied for the school’s most in 18 years.

It’s also worth noting that the Smoky Mountain Conference’s top four teams make up half of the eight teams remaining in the 1A West: no. 2 Andrews (12-0), no. 7 Murphy (9-3), no. 8 Robbinsville (9-3) and No. 12 Hayesville (7-5).

The Yellowjackets upset No. 5 Christ the King Catholic High School 14-13 in the second round, but ran into a much different beast in the Mount Airy Granite Bears. Mount Airy leads the 1A Division in both scoring – with 53.3 points per game – and fewest points allowed – with 7.3 PPG.

The 11-1 Granite Bears return to the Sweet 16 after reaching the 1A West Regional semifinals in 2021. Mount Airy is undefeated against teams competing in the 1A division, and has trailed 1A competition by just a combined 16 seconds this season.

The Bears have outscored 1A teams 572-21 this season.

The winner of Mount Airy/Hayesville will face the winner of No. 1 Eastern Randolph (10-1) and No. 8 Robbinsville (9-3) to face.

AT FIRST GLANCE

Mount Airy Granite Bears

Record: 11-1 overall, 6-0 Northwest 1A Conference (champion)

Current streak: 10 wins

Playoff seed: no. 4

Key regular season wins: 51-29 vs. Ashe County, 62-7 vs. East Wilkes, 44-7 vs. Starmount

Losses: 14-12 to East Surry

Opponents’ winning percentage: .391 (52-81)

Wins against teams that finished over .500:3

Playoff scores: 72-0 against no. 29 North Stokes, 57-7 against no. 13 North Rowan

Hayesville Yellowjackets

Record: 8-4 overall, 5-1 Smoky Mountain 1A Conference (fourth)

Current streak: 2 wins

Playoff seed: no. 12

Key regular season wins: 21-14 vs. Georgia Force Christian (GA), 43-14 at Lookout Valley (TN), 27-7 at Swain County

Losses: 42-14 vs. Tuscola, 50-7 vs. Andrews, 21-14 vs. Murphy, 28-21 vs. Cherokee, 21-9 vs. Robbinsville

Opponents’ winning percentage: .587 (81-57)

Wins against teams that finished over .500:2

Playoff scores: 37-22 against no. 21 Alleghany, 14-13 at no. 5 Christ the King Catholic High School

INFRINGEMENT

Mount Airy Granite Bears

Rushing YPG: 317.4

Yards per carry: 11.7

Rushing TD per game: 6

Cares per game: 73.8

Yts per completion: 21.6

Passing TD per game: 0.8

TDs per game: 7.6

Total YPG: 391.2

Total points scored: 639

Points per game: 53.3

QB Ian Gallimore (JR) – 868 yards passing, 40-of-70 completions, .571 completion percentage, 9 passing TDs, 2 interceptions, 63 carries for 441 yards, 6 rushing TDs, 2 2-point conversion rushes, 13 yards, total

RB Tyler Mason (JR) – 109 carries for 1,531 yards, 127.6 YPG rushing, 14.0 yards per carry, 34 rushing TDs, 1 2-point conversion rush, 1 reception for 10 yards

RB Caleb Reid* (JR) – 38 carries for 477 yards, 53.0 YPG rushing, 12.6 yards per carry, 12 rushing TDs, 1 2-point conversion rush

RB Taeshon Martin** (FR) – 40 carries for 460 yards, 46.0 YPG rushing, 11.5 yards per carry, 9 rushing TDs, 3 receptions for 32 yards

WR Walker Stroup (JR) – 15 receptions for 453 yards, 37.8 YPG receiving, 30.2 yards per reception, 5 receiving TDs

WR Mario Revels (JR) – 13 receptions for 191 yards, 15.9 YPG receiving, 14.7 yards per reception, 2 receiving TDs, 7 carries for 53 yards, 1 rush

*9 games played

*10 games played

Hayesville Yellowjackets

Cares per game: 111.3

Eat per completion: 12.6

Passing TDs per game: 1.3

Rushing YPG: 162.8

Yards per carry: 4.8

Rushing TDs per game: 1.7

TDs per game: 3.1

Total YPG: 274.0

Total points scored: 268

Points per game: 21.8

QB Logan Caldwell (SR) – 1,332 yards passing, 104-of-170 completions, .612 completion percentage, 15 passing TDs, 5 interceptions, 104 carries for 401 yards, 33.4 YPG rushing, 3.9 yards per rush, 3 .9 yards per run, 3.9 yards per downhill total yards

SB Taylor Mcclure (JR) – 161 carries for 836 yards, 69.7 YPG rushing, 5.2 yards per carry, 10 rushing TDs, 21 receptions for 308 yards, 25.7 YPG receiving, 14.7 yards per reception, 4 TDs received

RB/TE Kyle Lunsford (SR) – 70 carries for 437 yards, 36.4 YPG rushing, 6.2 yards per carry, 3 rushing TDs, 28 receptions for 352 yards, 29.3 YPG receiving, 12.6 yards per reception , received 2 TDs

TE Avery Leatherwood (SR) – 32 receptions for 386 yards, 32.2 YPG receiving, 12.1 yards per reception, 5 receiving TDs

WR/RB Michael Mauney (SOPH) – 13 receptions for 162 yards, 13.5 YPG receiving, 12.5 yards per reception, 2 receiving TDs, 15 carries for 66 yards, 5.5 YPG rushing, 4.4 yards per carry TDs, 2 rushes

DEFENSE

Mount Airy Granite Bears

PPG allowed: 7.3

Total points allowed: 88

Shutout Wins: 5

Tackles per game: 75.2

Tackles for a loss per game: 11.3

Sacks per game: 1.4

QB Rush per game: 5.1

Cause fumbling: 13

Bird recoveries: 12

Interceptions: 15

Interception sites: N/A

Passes defended: 50

Blocked points: 1

Fumbles returned for a TD: 1

Interceptions returned for a TD: 4

Safety: 1

MLB Ian Gallimore (JR) – 63 solo tackles, 101 total tackles, 8.4 tackles per game, 22.0 tackles for loss, 1 QB hurry, 1 interception, 1 fumble recovery, 1 forced fumble

OLB Caleb Reid* (JR) – 35 solo tackles, 66 total tackles, 7.3 tackles per game, 16.0 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, 1 QB hurry, 2 caused fumbles, 4 fumble recoveries , 1 fumble recovery for a TD, 1 interception, 1 pass defended

DE Deric Dandy (JR) – 24.0 tackles for loss, 5.0 sacks, 25 QB hurries, 34 solo tackles, 68 total tackles, 6.2 tackles per game, 2 caused fumbles, 1 pass defended

DT Cam’Ron Webster (SR) – 16.0 tackles for loss, 3.0 sacks, 3 QB hurries, 42 solo tackles, 67 total tackles, 5.6 tackles per game, 1 blocked punt, 3 fumbles fumble, 3 fumble recoveries

FS Walker Stroup (JR) – three interceptions, 12 passes defended, 1 pick-6, 2 caused fumbles, 1 fumble recovery, 32 solo tackles, 76 total tackles, 6.3 tackles per game, 6.0 tackles for a loss, 1 QB hurry

DB Logan Fonville (SR) – four interceptions, 10 passes defensed, 1 pick-6, 13 solo tackles, 42 total tackles, 1 fumble

*9 games played

Hayesville Yellowjackets

PPG allowed: 21.5

Total points allowed: 258

Shutout Wins: 0

Tackles per game: 56.4

Tackles for a loss per game: 3.2

Sacks per game: 0.8 per game

QB Rush per game: N/A

Cause fumbling: 9

Bird recoveries: 8

Interceptions: 12

Interception yards: 133

Passes defended: n/a

Blocked points: 0

Blocked field goals: 2

Fumbles returned for a TD: 0

Interceptions returned for a TD: 0

Security: 0

OLB Taylor McClure (JR) – 87 solo tackles, 129 total tackles, 10.8 tackles per game, 10.0 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, 3 caused fumbles, 1 interception, 1 blocked field goal

OLB Avery Leatherwood (SR) – 24 solo tackles, 48 ​​total tackles, 4.0 tackles per game, 6.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, 1 fumble recovery

MLB Davson Devane (SOPH) – 22 solo tackles, 46 total tackles, 3.8 tackles per game, 1.0 tackles for loss, 1 blocked field goal, 1 caused fumble, 1 fumble recovery

DE Cameron Payne (JR) – 25 solo tackles, 40 total tackles, 3.6 tackles per game, 4.0 tackles for loss, 1.0 sack, 1 caused fumble

SS Michael Mauney (SOPH) – 38 solo tackles, 55 total tackles, 4.6 tackles per game, 3 interceptions, 2 fumble recoveries

CB Bryan Davenport (SR) – 30 solo tackles, 49 total tackles, 4.1 tackles per game, 3.0 tackles for a loss

Special teams

Mount Airy Granite Bears

Walker Stroup (JR) – 66-of-70 PATs, 4-of-4 field goals, 7 punts for 259 yards, 45 touchdowns on 88 kickoffs, 170 return yards

Tyler Mason (JR) – 2 punts for a TD, 1 kickoff return for a TD, 272 return yards

Mario Revels (JR) – 1 punt return for a TD, 98 return yards

Hayesville Yellowjackets

Isaac Chandler (JR) – 31-of-37 PATs, 3-of-5 field goals, 17 returns on 43 kickoffs

Avery Leatherwood (SR) – 33 points for 1,211 yards (36.7 avg.)

Michael Mauney (SOPH) – 261 return yards

Logan Caldwell (SR) – 1 punt return for a TD, 79 return yards

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