Cedar Grove 40, Collins Hill 6

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

In a rare meeting between two reigning state championship teams, Class 3A Cedar Grove overpowered Class 7A Collins Hill 40-6.

The Class 3A No. 1-ranked Saints navigated the journey from DeKalb County and ended Collins Hill’s 17-game winning streak and handed the Eagles their first home loss since 2019.

“This is one of the games we definitely had circled,” said first-year Cedar Grove coach John Adams. “It was unfortunate that they were without their whole roster, but I tried to keep my guys focused on what’s right at hand and that’s this week.”

Class 7A No. 5 Collins Hill (2-1) was without four defensive starters who had to sit out after an altercation at the end of last week’s game with Brookwood.

Cedar Grove (3-0) brought a balanced attack, running for 197 yards and passing for 209. The Saints had to punt only one time.

Cedar Grove quarterback Elliott Colson completed 14 of 21 passes for 209 yards and one touchdown, which was caught by freshman Devin Carter, and ran for two touchdowns. Demarcus Smith ran for 70 yards and two touchdowns and Boden Walker added another touchdown.

Collins Hill opened the game with a touchdown drive, aided when the Eagles’ Brayton Carstarphen recovered a fumbled punt. Collins Hill scored three plays later when Mikey Sheehan threw a 24-yard touchdown pass to Isaiah Richardson.

The rest of the half belonged to Cedar Grove. The Saints answered with a quick touchdown on Smith’s 5-yard run and took the lead when Waker took it in from the 7.

Kyle Mosley’s interception set up the next Cedar Grove score, a 6-yard keeper by Colson. The Saints made it 26-6 with a late score on Smith’s 34-yard run.

Cedar Grove opened the second half with a 14-play 80-yard drive that was completed when Colson tossed a 3-yard touchdown pass to Carter. The Saints scored again on the first possession of the fourth quarter when Colson scored on an 11-yard run. That made it 40-6 and the teams opted to finish the game with a running clock.

“We’ve got some really good offensive players and a good offensive coordinator,” Adams said. “They do a real good job of being ready.”

Collins Hill was led in rushing by Jacarri Thomas, who gained 47 yards on 12 carries. Sheehan completed 7 of 13 passes for 47 yards and one interception. The Saints forced four three-and-outs and had seven tackles for loss.

“It’s just a matter of going each week and practicing hard,” Adams said. “They’ve seen it and they did a good job of being prepared.”

The schedule gets no easier for Cedar Grove, who next week plays at Class 7A No. 3 Mill Creek. The Saints, who compete in the four-team Region 5-3A, had to find seven games to complete their schedule. They still have games at Colquitt County and at St. Johns in Washington, D.C., before region play begins. Cedar Grove’s game with Miami (Fla.) Edison was cancelled and the Saints are still looking for a game to plug into their two open dates.