POWDER SPRINGS — McEachern bounced back from its resounding loss to Colquitt County and made history in the process with a 58-12 win over South Cobb in Friday’s home opener at Cantrell Stadium.
It marked the 400th win in program history for the Indians, dating back to 1960.
“It’s obviously a great milestone,” said McEachern coach Kyle Hockman, in his 11th season. “We’ve had a proud tradition and a record of excellence for 30-plus years. It’s very exciting to be a part of it.”
McEachern (1-1) struck first with 5:26 remaining in the first quarter when Parris Brown rushed 9 yards for the touchdown. Ruben Rodriguez kicked the extra point to give the Indians a 7-0 lead.
McEachern got prime field advantage after it blocked a South Cobb punt with 4:55 remaining in the first quarter and cashed in two plays later on Jordan Simmons’ 1-yard touchdown run to increase the advantage to 14-0 with 4:37 left.
South Cobb (0-2) narrowed the gap late in the first quarter as Aeneas Williams’ 51-yard pass to Brysen Boone set up Williams’ 23-yard scoring strike to Keishawn Laster. The 2-point conversion pass failed, leaving it 14-6 with 1:28 left.
McEachern stormed right back, however, as Valerian Agbaw Jr. ran back the ensuing kickoff 84 yards to take the ball to the South Cobb 6. The Indians scored on the first play of the series when Javon Barker made a diving catch of Carlos Del Rio-Wilson’s pass in the end zone for a 21-6 advantage with 1:06 left in the first quarter.
The Indians continued to build their lead early in the second quarter as Rodriguez kicked a 32-yard field goal to make it 24-6 with 9:28 left in the first half.
McEachern continued to roll along on its next offensive series as Brown’s 30-yard run brought the ball down to the South Cobb 22, setting up Del Rio-Wilson’s 22-yard touchdown pass to Baker to give the Indians a 31-6 lead with 4:36 left in the first half.
McEachern scored on its first offensive series of the second half as Brown rumbled 9 yards into the end zone for the touchdown to make it 37-6 at the 9:00 mark of the third quarter.
After South Cobb surrendered the ball on downs on the next series, McEachern got another score on its first play as Del Rio-Wilson threw a 38-yard touchdown pass to Montoya Cobb to push the Indians’ advantage up to 44-6 with 7:27 remaining in the third quarter.
McEachern scored yet again with 4:51 left in the third quarter on a 7-yard touchdown run by Christian Mason to make it 51-6, but South Cobb returrned the favor with a 12-yard scoring pass from Williams to Boone to cut the Indians’ advantage to 51-12 with 1:56 to go in the period.
McEachern had the final word, however, as Bryce Archie launched a 52-yard touchdown pass to D.J. Collins and Rodriguez added the extra point with 8:32 left in the game to give the Indians their final margin of victory.
“(Our players) worked very hard this week,” Hockman said. “Our players were very disappointed in their performance last week, and I was disappointed in my performance as a coach. Our goal is to keep getting better every week, and I felt like we were better this week. It was a good win for us.”