POWDER SPRINGS, GA – The “Battle Down in Powder Town” lived up to its’ billing, as the Hillgrove Hawks bested their close neighbor and rival, the McEachern Indians, by a 31-21 score.
Hillgrove came into the game with the 2nd ranked defense in AAAAAAA in terms of points allowed. It certainly looked like that would be the case in the early going. The Hawks snuffed out two promising McEachern drives. Once was by holding on fourth down, and the other was a Lance Wise interception. Hillgrove converted on that turnover with an Issaiah McCray rush to make it 7-0 at the end of the first quarter.
The Hawks made it 14-0 on a short touchdown run by TJ Thomas and Mercer commit Wise added his second pick of Indian quarterback Carlos Delrio-Wilson.
Just before halftime, it looked as if Delrio-Wilson might have found his rhythm. He led McEachern down the field and capped the drive off with a Jordan Simmons touchdown scamper, making it 14-7.
But Hillgrove had time for one last drive to stop the momentum. Quarterback Matthew McCravy found Trevarus Walker in a seam between two McEachern defenders. The 30-yard pass pushed the Hawks lead to 21-7 at the break.
In the second half, the teams traded scores. Paris Brown scored twice, once on a rush and another on a pass from Delrio-Wilson. Isaiah Grant scored for Hillgrove, making it 28-21. It looked like McEachern would get a chance for a tying drive late in the fourth, but Nicoy Morris muffed a Hillgrove punt. The Hawks recovered, and a 32-yard Luis Garcia-Cano field goal made it a two-possession game, and the Indians hope for a comeback was deflated.
McEachern outgained Hillgrove. The Indians accumulated 356 yards of offense while the Hawks managed 273. McCravy only passed for 35 yards on five completion in eleven attempts. But Hillgrove’s defense was opportunistic, forcing four turnovers including the muffed punt. Delrio-Wilson passed for 252 yards and a score, but the two picks by Wise did them in.
Ninth-ranked Hillgrove will move ahead of seventh-ranked McEachern in the next poll, and, most importantly, tie for the top in Region 3 of 7A. The Hawks stay undefeated at 6-0, while the Indians slide to 4-2.

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