MARIETTA — It was a designed run with three receivers to his right and only one defender to beat, so Tyler Hughes raced the Hillgrove defender to the pylon.

They met there and the Hillgrove defender’s helmet went flying as Hughes dove into the end zone.

Hughes threw for 255 first-half yards and four touchdowns before the break to give Marietta a 48-0 homecoming win Friday night in Region 3AAAAAA play at Northcutt Stadium.

“He just got outside, read those blocks and beat them to the pylon,” Marietta coach Richard Morgan said of Hughes’ run. “Tyler’s faster than most running backs, so if he gets outside, he’s going to have a chance to score.”

Hughes finished 20-for-28 with five touchdowns through the air for Marietta (4-3, 1-1).

Christian Mathis and Camden Overton each caught a pair of touchdowns for the Blue Devils, while Kamryn Perry added another.

“I feel like we were high-paced. Everybody knew what they needed to do. Our offensive line played really well today and gave us a bunch of time to complete our routes, and our receivers got into our routes,” Overton said. “I just think our whole offense was just trusting each other. Tyler kept throwing the ball and, if the receiver wasn’t open yet, he was going to throw them open. There was just a lot of trust out there.”

Hillgrove (1-6, 0-2) was held to 46 yards of offense but had its best shot to breakup the shutout on its final drive. However, a pair of blocking penalties and then an interception by Marietta’s Allen Gruen ended it.

It was the first shutout for the Marietta defense since it beat Wheeler 52-0 to open the 2017 season. The lopsided loss matched Hillgrove’s largest margin of defeat in a regular-season game in its 16-year history.

“They played well,” Morgan said of the Blue Devils’ defense. “We fixed some things up from last week, and I thought they played really well. They played fast and they played physical. That’s what we were asking for.”

Hughes led Marietta’s rushers with 66 yards and a touchdown.

Mathis caught nine passes for 165 yards, Overton added 96 yards on six catches and Perry had 55 yards on three catches.

After jumping out to a 21-0 lead after the first quarter, Hughes and the Blue Devils’ offense kept pushing the ball down the field. He completed three second-quarter touchdown passes, starting with a 52-yarder to Mathis and finishing with a 30-yarder to Mathis on fourth down with less than 30 seconds in the half.

“We had a couple rough weeks, and I feel like tonight we were able to keep it going and push them,” Hughes said.

Marietta will continue region play at Harrison next Friday, while Hillgrove will play at North Cobb.


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