Mill Creek Hawks (8-AAAAAAA)

Last week: Beat West Forsyth 20-17

Mill Creek’s difficult non-region schedule gets even tougher Friday with a road trip to unbeaten and nationally ranked Grayson. The Hawks have gone 2-1 through their first stretch of challenges with wins over Dacula and West Forsyth sandwiching a 24-13 loss at Brookwood.

Last Friday’s win over West Forsyth was fueled by defense and special teams, most notably a game-winning punt return for a touchdown by Khamari Glover in the final minute. The offense struggled to find success, though a 69-yard catch by Zekai Wimby was a bright spot. Dylan Lane and Collin Russell led the line for an offense that failed to find the end zone last Friday.

The defense delivered, aside from allowing a couple of big plays, was solid. Caleb Downs had nine tackles and a 73-yard interception return for a score, and Bryson Taylor had 10 tackles and an interception. Emon Hill (eight tackles, two pass breakups), Noah Allen (seven tackles, one pass breakup) and Christian McIntyre (seven tackles, one pass breakup) also played well on defense.

Grayson was off last Friday after reeling off four straight wins in September against Jones County (51-13), McEachern (55-21), Collins Hill (28-7) and Archer (26-7). In the Archer win, the Rams forced five fumbles and recovered three, two that stopped red-zone drives for the Tigers.

Phil Mafah’s 57-yard TD run in the first quarter, along with Grady Bryant’s two-point conversion run, gave the Rams an 8-0 lead over Archer that held until late in the third quarter. A.J. Lopez provided the decisive blow for Grayson late in the third with his 81-yard interception return for a score. Mafah tacked on a TD run in the fourth.

Last meeting: Grayson won 44-26 in 2016

Location: Grayson High School

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