The Indians will need the same fortitude heading into tonight’s matchup against Collins Hill.
McEachern has won their first two playoff games despite not having the services of senior quarterback Ty Clemons, and using running back Taj Griffin sparingly.
The health of the McEachern’s top offensive players has improved this week.
“Despite having a setback last week, Ty has progressed well through practices and should be ready to play (tonight),” McEachern coach Kyle Hockman said. “Taj is close to 100 percent as well and we plan to have him prominently in our game plan.”
The Indians plan to continue using the “Wildcat” offensive scheme. Bailey Hockman, who started the playoff games in Clemons’ abcence, and Andrew Haywood will also be available at quarterback.
Collins Hill has won its last six contests, averaging 50 points a game, and scoring 41and 48 points against Walton and Alpharetta respectively in its first two playoff games.
“We’ve had several key offensive linemen return from injury for us and the players have gotten better each week,” Collins Hill coach Kevin Reach said. “We’re focused on our scheme and being in the right positions. “We’ll also have to win the turnover ration and limit penalties.”
Eagles quarterback Tyler Herman has thrown 32 touchdown passes this season while running back Tyler Henderson’s 23 rushing scores rank among the most in the state.
“They have one of the top offenses in the state and are multi-faceted,” Kyle Hockman said. “We’ll have to pressure the quarterback and control their running game. We’re getting healthy and feel good about our game plan.”
Reach also is aware of the Indians’ offense, which has averaged more than 36 points per contest this year and their key weapon.
“We’re going to have to contain Griffin and make sure that he doesn’t break big plays,” Reach said.
A victory would propel McEachern to its first semifinal appearance since 1998.
Game: McEachern (10-2) at Collins Hill (11-1), 7:30 p.m.
Last meeting: First meeting
All-time series: First meeting
Prediction: Collins Hill 40, McEachern 31