One week after the snow forced the cancellation of the GHSA State football playoffs originally scheduled to take place at the new Mercedes Benz stadium, North hosted the State AAAAAAA Championship Football game at Robinson stadium in Suwanee. The large crowd that began tailgating 3 hours prior to kickoff were delighted to witness what may go down as one of the greatest games in State history.
North Gwinnett was host to Colquitt County and Colquitt Head Coach, Rush Propst’s high powered offense. North was ready with its Number 1 rank in region 6AAAAAAA.
With 49 seconds on the clock, Colquitt scored a touchdown that put Colquitt ahead of North by one point at 17-16. North took the ball deep in their territory and began their long drive. As time began to expire Colquitt Co proceeded to commit 4 penalties giving North a 1st down at midfield. As time was about to expire North QB Urzua dropped back and threw a long pass that appeared to be defended but Colquitt Co was penalized for pass interference and gave North a 1st down with no time on the clock. However, the game cannot end on a defensive penalty so North lined up for a field goal with no time on the clock. North Kicker, Cameron Clark had earlier missed a field goal for the extra point as well as a field goal in the 4th quarter that would have sealed the win for North.
With no time left Clark lined up for a 38 yard field goal attempt and with the crowd on their feet, Clark stepped up and delivered the kick which was good and sealed North Gwinnett’s 1st State Football Championship in the school’s 59 year history with a score of 19-17.
After the game fans and players stormed the field to celebrate the fulfillment of their playoff motto of “Our House, Our Time”. Coach Bill Stewart was awarded the State Championship trophy at mid-field. Students, parents, and alumni alike celebrated and took to social media to tell everyone just how proud they were of their team.
The City of Suwanee held a celebration on December 21, 2017 at Suwanee Town Center Park where several hundred people came out to hear Coach Bill Stewart and Mayor Jimmy Burnette speak to the Bulldog Nation. The crowd was treated to a humorous Q & A with key players led by coaching staff as well as the Cheerleaders getting the crowd pumped up.
Awards and college commitments poured in after the big win. All Region 6AAAAAAA awards were announced and among the First Team Offense players were QB Jimmy Urzua, RB Tyler Goodson, WR Josh Downs, OL Warren Ericson, OL Justin Bullock, and KR Javonni Cunningham. DL Payne Walker, DL Knox Denning, LB Jayden McDonald, LB Jake Stewart, DB Warren Burrell, and DB D.J. Turner were North’s First Team Defensive players. Early College Signings netted North four commits with Payne Walker (Georgia recruit), Cade Fortin (North Carolina), Jayden McDonald (Rutgers) and Warren Ericson (Georgia).