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High School Sports: News and Notes

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Sports

Despite the Covid-19 crisis Morgan County High School fall sports are in full swing and as always our players and coaches are doing a great job.  Most importantly the kids are are out there doing what they love and that is a big deal after months of uncertainty.  Today we will just cast a look around to check out the news for some of these teams as well as take a look at a few topics of interest around the state in high school sports. How Region 4AAA football playoff …

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It was football but 5-2?

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Sports

By Alvin Richardson Columnist  It was just a weird football game and I’m not just talking about fans and players on the sidelines wearing masks.  Nope.  What was really strange was that neither offense mustered a touchdown which is pretty rare in these days of high scoring games.  Both teams had a safety.  Not unheard of but pretty odd.  The total offense of both teams combined was 231 yards (173 for Morgan and 58 for Putnam) which sounds like a game out of the 1950’s.  Plus throw in an overtime …

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Be on the Lookout for a Weird Football Season

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Sports

(Author’s note: I wrote this column prior to the last Friday’s football game with Putnam.  Little did I know that the weirdness was just beginning because Putnam defeated Morgan 5-2 – a score that had never been posted in a high school football game since 1912.  Read more about the game and the history behind that score in today’s sports page.) High school football in Georgia is back.  Despite all the delays, fits and starts, quarantines, doubts and gnashing of teeth we’ve finally made it.  Many teams around the state …

Morgan Falls to Putnam 5-2 in Overtime

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Sports

By Alvin Richardson Columnist  Morgan County’s 2020 campaign got off to a rocky start with a 5-2 loss to old rival Putnam County at Al Reaves Field last Friday night.  The baseball-like score (see separate article on the rarity of this result) came as a result of two bad snaps that turned into safeties and a War Eagle field goal in overtime for the winning points.  Other than that both defensive units stymied the opposing offenses and the result was that Putnam had 58 yards of total offense on 62 …

Bulldogs Get Set to Open 2020 Season-Malone Begins his 14th Campaign at the Helm

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Community

By Alvin Richardson Staff Writer Bill Malone has been around the Morgan County football program for a long time. The veteran coach, who is one of the longest tenured in Class AAA and in the top 25 longest tenured in the state, has been at Morgan since 1994.  He started as an assistant coach on Kenny Moore’s staff and was named head coach in 2007.  Over the span of 13 years as head coach, Malone has compiled a record of 77-62 with two region titles to his credit. He’s seen …

Middle School christens new gym facility

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Sports

By R. Alan Richardson Sports Editor  It was a day of positivity for Morgan County Middle School. Not only did they open up and play their inaugural event in the beautiful new athletic facility, but they came away with two wins over conference rival Malcom Bridge and honored their eighth graders during the event. The MCMS facility isa fantastic venue that seats over 1000 spectators,according to Athletic Director Brian Cousins. He said, “We opened our new gym with some awesome volleyball victories against Malcom Bridge out of Oconee County.  We …

Eastside softball seniors honored at Dog Pound

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Sports

By R. Alan Richardson Sports Editor  In a not-so-rare move of class act that has become something for which the Morgan County Bulldogs are known; the Lady Dogs gave a senior night final hoorah to the two Eastside softball seniors playing their final game at the Dog Pound. Coaches Anne Stamps and head softball coach Jason McBay found out before Friday’s matchup between the two schools that Newton County’s powers-that-be had canceled all fall sports activities.  Ultimately this became the final at-bat for Eastside’s Kelsey Ellis and Riley Hannah.  With …

MCMS Lady Dogs thrash Youth in season opener

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Sports

By R. Alan Richardson Sports Editor  It was a big day for Coach Shelly Hilsman’s Middle School softball team as they took a first-ever win over conference rival Youth 9-6 last week.  Leading the offensive attack for the Lady Dogs were Mallory Martin who went 3-4 with three RBI’s and scored two runs and Kymora Smith who was 2-4 and scored three runs in the victory.  Reese Johnson, Ryleigh Hilsman, and Aziyah Robertson each contributed with one hit apiece.     Starters for the game were: Kymora Smith Mallory Martin …

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Chasing the Wild Geese of Moonshine Swamp

Staff Written Alvin Richardson, Community

As youthful hunters we were always on the lookout for new adventures and we found an opportunity when goose season opened one cold winter day the year of which escapes me.  It seems that it was about 1975.  I’m able to put an approximate date on the proceedings because I was about halfway through college, quite full of myself and remember that I had discovered the manliness of a big chaw of tobacco which is crucial to the story. The ambush point was a swamp on the backside of our …

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Don’t Get “Hooked” on Fishing

Sports Reports Alvin Richardson, Community

If I ever write a book I’ll call it Truth’s, Half Truth’s and Downright Lies mainly because I can’t remember which category all my little adventures fall under.  But today I offer you the painful details concerning an incident that is carved into my memory (so to speak). It is a true and accurate account of an episode the details of which I have never before revealed to anyone (except a certain doctor friend). It was embarrassing, discomforting, distressing and historically without precedent.  I hope you don’t think less of …

Wrestling star Mitchell signs with Rinehardt

Editor Alvin Richardson, Sports Leave a Comment

By R. Alan Richardson sports editor The Morgan County Bulldogs continue to pile up scholarships for the next level.  The latest is 18 year-old senior wrestler Luke Mitchell who signed on to help start a brand new program at Rinehardt University in Waleska, Ga. for the upcoming season.  He was only the sixth signee that the Eagles offered. Mitchell wrestled for Coach John Robbins for four years and competed in the 145 pound class his senior season.  He is a two-time state placer finishing fourth his junior year and fifth …

Precious Life- Cherished Memories

Editor Alvin Richardson Leave a Comment

By Alvin Richardson Sports Writer The death of Morgan County High School’s Seth Stapleton was a lightning bolt of cold reality to all who knew and loved him. He was, by all accounts, a beloved member of the student body, a leader on the football team, a trusted friend to his buddies and a salt of the earth guy. That he died at such a tender age serves as a poignant reminder of how precious and fleeting life can be. It also serves as an instrument to help us all …

Reclassification for GHSA Includes “Big 44” and the 3% Rule

Editor Alvin Richardson, Featured, Front Page Leave a Comment

By Alvin Richardson If you follow high school sports closely you may have noticed that the Georgia High School Association has recently decided to add another classification for 2016-17. It will be known as the Big 44 and is set to include the top 10 percent of schools in Georgia as reported through their FTE count. Without going into the minutia of that acronym, an FTE count is simply how many students a school has enrolled. This decision was made to address a specific problem. In Class 6A there was …

Junk Food Junkie

Editor Alvin Richardson Leave a Comment

By Alvin Richardson, Columnist My wife and I have two separate lifestyles when it comes to eating. The long and short of that statement is that she consumes healthy food and I don’t. It’s not that I’m the anti-fruits and vegetables guy – it really comes down to three things: • There are a lot of foods that my notoriously funky stomach will not tolerate • I like junk food • There are hundreds of scientific studies out there that warn us against certain foods which can be conflicting and …

On love songs and unrequited love

Editor Alvin Richardson Leave a Comment

By Alvin Richardson, Columnist The music industry has made scads of money on songs that feature stories about relationships between men and women. The splendor and often times raucous nature of bonds between the sexes is a natural fit for song lyrics because most people have at least a passing interest in it and everyone has an old love story to tell. Many of those stories are either fondly or painfully revisited when a familiar melody comes over the airwaves. No portion of the music business takes on this topic …

Morgan County Vaults Into the Final Four – Dogs Blow Out South Atlanta in Second Half

Editor Alvin Richardson, Featured, Sports Leave a Comment

By Alvin Richardson Staff Writer In front of a packed house the Morgan County basketball squad broke open a close road contest against South Atlanta High School with a 17-0 outburst early in the third period of Thursday night’s game and cruised to a 78-50 win. That victory over the third ranked Hornets catapulted Morgan into the Final Four of Georgia’s Class AAA basketball tournament. MCHS guard Tookie Brown had another stellar night scoring 37 points and made shots from every conceivable spot on the floor. Morgan County’s defense was …

Just call me Old Gremlin Ear

Editor Alvin Richardson Leave a Comment

By Alvin Richardson, Columnist I have to visit the doc pretty regularly these days because there’s lots of parts that seem to be wearing out on me. My body is kind of like a ’55 Chevy – it needs plenty of TLC to stay in running order. The latest episode involved a mad skin doctor (aka dermatologist), a sympathetic nurse, loud power tools, a carving knife, and a bunch of blood. The end result was not what one would refer to as a cosmetic miracle or a walk on the …

Dogs Advance to Elite Eight

Editor Alvin Richardson, Featured, Front Page, Sports Leave a Comment

The Morgan County Bulldogs flexed their muscles this past week easily running past an overmatched Lumpkin County team by a score of 82-33 on Thursday afternoon and then turning back a determined squad from Central Macon High School in a 69-61 win this past Saturday night. Those two wins put the Dogs into the quarterfinals of the state tournament. They are set to go up against the South Atlanta High Hornets on Wednesday, February 25th. The Hornets are 27-4 on the season and ranked 3rd in the state polls. Since both teams were region champions and number one seeds a coin flip will determine home court advantage.

The blunt truth about Mary Jane

Editor Alvin Richardson Leave a Comment

By Alvin Richardson, Columnist This is not a gossip column so the title may be somewhat misleading. Just bear with me. Today’s offering is more akin to going out on the proverbial limb or venturing onto a slippery slope. I do this in the name of public debate but don’t send me any critical e-mails on the choice of topic. Somebody’s got to say it so why not me? There are a couple of moves afoot in our country that revolve around the legalization of marijuana in both recreational and …

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Musically disinclined

Editor Alvin Richardson Leave a Comment

I will never forget the morning that I climbed into bed with Mama, scrunched up close to her and in a small voice pleaded, “Mama, can I please quit taking piano lessons”? She could not bear to see her sweet little boy in such obvious pain and relented. It probably cost her something because she wanted all of her young ruffians to have at least a smidgen of culture. Alas that was not to be the case with me and the end of those music lessons marked the conclusion of …