091119_MNS_GOTW_Matt_Davis Matt Davis

Holy Innocents’ football player Matt Davis carries the ball in a 2018 road game against Mount Pisgah Christian.

The Holy Innocents’ road trip to Rutland highlights the fourth week of the prep football season as the non-region portion of many squads’ schedules winds down Sept. 13.

The Golden Bears enter the contest undefeated through their first two contests. Holy Innocents’ started the season with a 28-0 home win over Mount Pisgah Christian Aug. 24.

The Golden Bears followed it with another home triumph, this time against Hebron Christian 28-21 Aug. 30. Holy Innocents’ rushed for 301 yards in the victory. Matt Davis’ 37-yard touchdown run late in the fourth quarter gave the Golden Bears the 28-21 lead.

Mount Pisgah attempted to tie the score, but a subsequent fumble on its next possession recovered by Leighton Dickson of Holy Innocents’ secured the victory. Michael Cox had three rushing TDs for the Golden Bears, pushing his season total to five. It’s the first two-game winning streak to start the season for the Golden Bears since 2013.

“Our offense played very well scoring,” Holy Innocents’ coach Todd Winter said. “Our kicking game was very solid all night. They had a very good returner, and our kickers — Peter Wandtke and Marshall Nichols — did an excellent job placing the ball where he could not return it. Our offensive line played very well. Michael and Matt had solid game on offense and on defense Hunter Hawk, Spencer Goetz and Ronny Williams played very well.”

Next up for the Golden Bears will be a road contest against Class 2A program Rutland. Holy Innocents’ won its contest against the Hurricanes 49-7 in the lone lifetime meeting of the programs in 2018.

Marist hosts Westminster in another non-region contest of two strong programs. The War Eagles picked up a 49-0 road win over Lovett in its season opener Aug. 30. Marist outgained Lovett 534-189 in total yards. War Eagles quarterback Connor Cigeleske completed all seven pass attempts for 162 yards and three touchdowns while also rushing for 125 yards and two scores. Other top offensive performers for Marist were Josh Moore with 150 receiving yards and two touchdowns and Lincoln Parker with 102 rushing yards.

Wesminster dropped its home contest to Greater Atlanta Christian 19-14 Aug. 30. Marist leads the lifetime series over Westminster 28-18-1 and won the past three contests, including a 24-7 victory in 2018.

Lovett looks to bounce back from its Marist defeat with a home tilt against Mary Persons. The Lions dropped their lone previous meeting against Mary Persons 58-21 in 2018.

St. Pius picked up its first win of the season with a 10-8 victory over Dunwoody Aug. 30. Nick Joyner scored a one-yard touchdown run in the second quarter for the Golden Lions and Eli Marshbank’s 34-yard field goal with 1:16 left in regulation gave them the lead. Walker Stevens led the St. Pius X defense with 11 tackles while Austin Taylor and Paul Quigley each had an interception.

“Our defense played well all night in spite of getting put back on the field numerous times in the second half,” Golden Lions coach Paul Standard said. “I am proud of the offensive effort given that we are playing many younger players who are improving each day. When we got behind late, our kids did not panic.”

Next up for St. Pius will be a home contest against Decatur Sept. 13. The Golden Lions lead the lifetime series 13-3-1 and won the 2018 contest 27-6.

Other contests Sept. 13 include North Atlanta opening Region 7AAAAAA play at Johns Creek and Pace hosting Charlotte Christian.

North Springs picked up a 38-0 win over Clarkston in its home opener Aug. 30. Santino Gauderau threw for a game-high 459 yards and four touchdowns while also rushing for a score. Keegan Avery (204 receiving yards, two TDs) and Neriyan Brown (174 receiving yards, two TDs) also had big nights on offense. Defensively, Jon Kramer and Jordon Dugger each had seven tackles.

“The team is very young but improving daily,” Spartans coach Scotty Parker said. “Offensive line play was very good on pass plays giving our quarterback time to hit the open receivers. As a whole, we took steps in getting better and improving our play. We just need to be clicking on all cylinders and injury free when we start region play in a couple of weeks.” North Springs is off this week.

Wesleyan earned a 28-6 home win over Class 2A program Chattooga Aug. 30. Cooper Blauser scored three touchdowns (one on a kickoff return, one a reception and one rushing) in the victory.

“Our defense was a key factor early in the game and there was very little scoring in the first half,” Wolves coach Franklin Pridgen said. “Our offense got rolling in the second half with two long scoring drives and the defense and kicking game remained stout. It was great to avenge another 2018 loss.” Wesleyan is off this week.

Mount Vernon was also victorious Aug. 30 with a 48-21 win at Mount Pisgah Christian. Mustangs quarterback Blake Kytle threw or 219 yards and five touchdowns in the victory. Skylar Stefaniak-Earley had 215 total yards as well for Mount Vernon.

“It was a solid win for our program,” Mustangs coach Wayne Dabbs said. “We started slow, but I am proud of how the guys continued to compete until the end. We were able to get to halftime and make a few adjustments, and finish the game the way we felt we were capable.” Mount Vernon is off this week.

Riverwood defeated McIntosh 43-14 Aug. 30 and has a bye this week. Woodward was also victorious the same day with a 35-7 win against Grady and is also idle this week.

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