Cambridge 24, Riverwood 13

Riverwood defensive back Deangelo Thompson (11) trips Cambridge running back Phillip Michael Collins (2) in the second half of Friday's game.
Riverwood defensive back Deangelo Thompson (11) trips Cambridge running back Phillip Michael Collins (2) in the second half of Friday's game.

Credit: Daniel Varnado/Special to the AJC

Credit: Daniel Varnado/Special to the AJC

3rd quarter miscues doom Raiders

The Riverwood Raiders had momentum over the Cambridge Bears to open the second half and on the verge of potentially taking the lead, but a series of miscues led to their unraveling as the Bears capitalized to sprint to a 24-13 win on Friday in Milton.

The win moves the Bears to 4-4, 3-2 in Region 7-6A and drops the Raiders to 3-3, 1-4.

Bears senior running back Phillip Michael Collins rushed 32 time for 121 yards — both game-highs — and added a touchdown to pace the offense, but it was the Bears defense that had two fumbles recoveries, an interception and forced three turnovers on downs that sealed the win.

The Bears were poised to take a 10-0 lead into halftime when the Raiders scored on an Avery Smith 6-yard pass to Levi Linowes with 6.7 seconds left. That capped a nine-play, 60-yard drive that began with 1:38 left and pulled the Raiders to within 10-7.

The Raiders opened the second half with possession and again marched down the field, using nine plays to go 67 yards. However, on second-and-goal from the 3, Smith avoided an initial sack attempt and made an ill-advised, off-balance throw that floated into the hands of Bears defensive back Graham Browning.

It looked as though the Raiders might survive the turnover and force a three-and-out, but the Bears converted on third-and-15 on Zach Harris' 15-yard pass to Hayden Gardella. From there, the Bears drove the length of the field and capitalized on third-and-5 from the Riverwood 17, when Harris hit Jack Marlow for the touchdown.

It would only get worse for the Raiders from there.

On the ensuing kickoff, they were called for a 15-yard blocking in the back penalty, which put them on their own 15. On the drive’s first play, they fumbled and the Bears recovered at the line of scrimmage. Four plays later, Collins scored on a 1-yard run to make it 24-7 with 1:53 left in the third quarter.

The Raiders responded on the next drive on a 20-yard touchdown pass from Smith to Ronel Saintvil with 10:46 remaining, but the extra point attempt was blocked. That brought the score to its final margin.

The Raiders had a chance to pull closer, with their defense forcing three punts. But they turned the ball over on downs twice and ended the game on an incomplete pass to the end zone.

Gardella led the Bears with 75 yards on five catches.

The Raiders were led by Deangelo Thompson’s 79 yards on 14 carries. Smith had 74 yards on 10 carries and Saintvil had 58 yards on two catches.

Riverwood 0 7 0 6 — 13

Cambridge 0 10 14 0 — 24

C — Zach Harris 3 run (McCall Bennett kick)

C — Bennett 21 FG

R — Levi Linowes 6 pass from Avery Smith (Nathan West kick)

C — Jack Marlow 17 pass from Zach Harris (Bennett kick)

C — Phillip Michael Collins 1 run (Bennett kick)

R — Ronel Saintvil 20 pass from Smith (kick failed)

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