Sprayberry

Damarion Owens will be counted on to have a big game Friday when Sprayberry takes on Collins Hill.

Game: Sprayberry (0-1) at Collins Hill (1-0), 7:30 p.m.

Last meeting: First meeting

All-time series: First meeting

Prediction: Collins Hill 35, Sprayberry 27

Sprayberry will have one more tune-up game before beginning region play and it will be against one of the better teams in the state.

The Yellow Jackets (0-1) fell 48-30 to North Cobb in their season opener and the task will get no easier this week as they travel to Collins Hill (1-0). The No. 5 team in Class AAAAAAA defeated Carrollton 46-24 last Saturday.

Sprayberry fell behind early against North Cobb but closed the gap in the second half. Running back Damarion Owens led the way finishing with 171 yards on 23 carries with two touchdowns.

Owens was the leading rusher in Cobb County during the regular season in 2019 with 1,687 yards, and Sprayberry coach Brett Vavra said he expects another big season from his lead back.

“He’s the real deal,” Vavra said. “He’s explosive, hard to tackle, great vision. He’s added a little bit of burst this season too. We’re seeing that this year.”

Sprayberry will face highly-touted signal-caller nior Sam Horn on Friday. Horn is the No. 4 pro-style quarterback prospect in the country for the Class of 2022. He began the season 27-for-40 for 364 yards.

“(Collins Hill) is probably one of the top offenses in the state of Georgia,” Vavra said. “They’ve got the quarterback and the receiver but they’ve also got dudes all around them. It’s a very different style game for us this week and another challenge against a really good program.”

Horn has an excellent primary target on the outside as well. Florida State commit Travis Hunter — the No. 5 prospect in the country for the Class of 2022 — finished with eight catches for 185 yards and three touchdowns.

Sprayberry will likely need to establish Owens early and often to keep the Collins Hill offense on the sideline. Sprayberry finished with 288 rushing yards against North Cobb and Owens was complimented well by Isaiah Abbey, who finished with 49 yards on six carries.

“I thought our offensive line played pretty tough,” Vavra said. “Not perfect, but we have a couple sophomores and for being their first start, I thought they played pretty well. No question about it, we’ll be battle-tested when we hit the region. We needed to put our feet to fire a little bit.”

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