High School Football

New name, renewed attitude for Central 8-man program

by Doug Gorman

The school’s name may have changed, but the goals for Central Christian’s 8-man program remains to bring a football championship to the school.

Central — formally known as Heritage Christian — jumps from the Independent Schools of Georgia and Alabama Association, where it had reached a state final in 2012, to a new conference comprised of teams from Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina.

The last two seasons for the Crusaders have provided opposite ends among the spectrum of success.

Coming off a 1-loss season in 2013, the program struggled with numbers in categories that included players and points, while finishing winless.

Among the positives, however, last year’s team completed the year with back-to-back losses by five combined points, including a final 40-36 loss to Harvester in the state playoffs.

“Last year wasn’t the year we wanted it to be, but there’s lessons in everything you do win or lose,” said head coach Paul Frantz, who heads into his second year at the helm following several as a coordinator and assistant in the program. “The kids who are back, that makes them that much hungry.”

Heading into this season, there’s a renewed interest in football at the school, and it started with the off-season conditioning program and working hard in the weight room.

“That’s where it starts,” Frantz said. “If that’s not where you want it to be, you are not going to have a very good season. This team has always had a tough mindset, and some kind of direction. They will do whatever you ask them to do, and they will do it 100 percent.”

Frantz thinks last year’s disappointing season might play in the team’s favor heading into this year’s campaign.

“I think to appreciate the highs, you have to have some lows,” Frantz said.

Central opens the 2014 season against Freedom Academy Friday at East Coweta Middle School.

Linemen Jesse and Christian Parkerson bring experience and leadership and will again be counted this season.

“They didn’t hardly miss a workout this summer,” Frantz said “They are bigger, stronger and faster, and they are hungry. They went through some tough times last year and they are ready.”

During the offseason, the Crusaders also welcomed back former teammate Jared Farlow to the program. Farlow, who spent last season at nearby Trinity Christian, was the Lions’ leading rusher and is slated to start at quarterback.

Another Trinity transfer, Wyatt Martinez, should provide a boost after finishing among the Lions top tacklers in 2013.

Frantz admits he doesn’t know too much about next week’s opponent, but he is excited about moving to a new league.”

“There is a whole lot more to play for,” he said. “There are some really good opponents on the schedule this year. We are ready to get after it.”

More Sports

GHSA Softball

State-bound, E. Coweta, Newnan battle for seeding

With only four teams participating in the Region 3-AAAAAA double-elimination softball tournament this week, both top-seed East Coweta and No ... Read More

High School Softball

Heritage advances to 2nd round for first time in school history

Heritage School’s softball team advanced to the second round of the GISA state tournament for the first time Thursday by sweeping Terr ... Read More

High School Football

Wet and wild: Late special teams play seals win for Indians

East Coweta head coach Steve Pardue is old school enough to realize offenses win football games but defenses can make or break a season. On ... Read More

High School Football

Trinity Christian thwarts Holy Spirit; Hawks fall short at Loganville

ATLANTA - After his team cruised to its GISA Region 1-AAA opener three weeks ago, Trinity Christian head coach Dan Matthews got a chance to ... Read More

High School Football

Cougars keep pace atop region

A week after watching its defense do the heavy lifting, Newnan's offense caught up in a 49-21 rout of Douglas County, scoring on its opening ... Read More

High School Football

Vikings have big 'Mac' attack in second half

PEACHTREE CITY - Northgate head football coach Tommy Walburn warned the Vikings following Friday's 39-7 victory at McIntosh that not every g ... Read More