GAC defeats Holy Innocents'

Greater Atlanta Christian made its case to be ranked in the top 10 in Class AA on Friday.

The Spartans scored six touchdowns over two quarters in a 49-10 win over Holy Innocents’ in a non-region game at Riverwood High School.

GAC is off to a 3-0 start, outscoring opponents 139-24. Tim Cokely, who was the coach at Colquitt County from 2005-2007, has made big changes since being hired after GAC posted a 1-9 record last season.

“We caught a couple of breaks early and our defense did a good job of tackling and playing with discipline against their option, because that can be a hard thing to do,” Cokely said.

GAC put up some staggering offensive numbers, finishing with 478 total yards, including 356 yards rushing. GAC’s Lavondre Nelson rushed nine times for 95 yards and two touchdowns. Teammate DaSean Daniels had eight carries for 81 yards and two touchdowns, despite no touches after halftime.

“We have a philosophy of putting the best 11 on defense and then rotate guys on offense, including running back,” Cokely said.

Holy Innocents’ (2-1) finished with 69 yards total offense.

Whatever GAC tried on Friday, it seemed to work. Less than 20 seconds after the opening kickoff, Holy Innocents’ turned the ball over on a fumble on its own 21-yard line. Daniels carried three straight times, scoring on a 10-yard touchdown run, and the Spartans never looked back.

At halftime, GAC had 325 total yards. The Spartans broke the game open with four touchdowns in the second quarter, starting with Kaliff Raymond’s 60-yard touchdown reception from Jared Chapple. A few minutes later, Chapple had three straight quarterback runs for 13, 13 and 20 yards to the Holy Innocents’ 1 yard line. Daniels scored on the next play for the 21-3 advantage.

The Spartans scored two more touchdowns before the end of the half, and two quick ones after intermission to go ahead 49-3.

Both teams have big games next week, with GAC scheduled to play Class AA No. 7 Westminster and Holy Innocents’ against Class A No. 3 Wesleyan.

“We may be hard to overlook now [with the rankings], but we’re not worried about all of that,” Cokely said. “Sometimes those rankings can be a death wish.”