On a chilly, November 1st night, the North Cobb Warriors travelled to McEachern High School to challenge the unbeaten Indians. When asked about this week’s preparation, Warrior’s CB Nasir Howell said: “This week, the coaches and team had a heart to heart conversation with each other, looking to regain our identity after last week’s loss to Marietta.”
The Indians began the game with the ball, and methodically drove down the field. After a big stop on third down, the Indians were left looking at a 4th and 9 from the Warrior’s 27-yard line. Rather than kick a field goal, the Indians elected to go for it and converted a 27-yard touchdown to open the scoring on a pass from QB Carlos Del Rio to senior WR Javon Baker. Although the pass was heavily contested, Baker was able to elevate above the defender and haul in a one handed grab for the score, making it 7-0 in favor of McEachern. When asked about the catch after the game, Baker simply replied, “I did my job.” The 6’1’’ senior receiver has committed to play football at the University of Alabama next year.
Although North Cobb looked to be gaining momentum later in the quarter after multiple first downs and a red zone appearance, a fumble ended the promising drive and gave the ball back to the Indians on their own 20. The touchdown reception by Javon Baker early in the first would be the lone score of the quarter, as McEachern kept possession entering the second quarter.
Following a punt by each team, the Indians received the ball again a few minutes into the second quarter. This time, the Indians were able to sustain a long drive, highlighted by a Jordan Simmons run that put them in the red zone. As the clock dipped below 5 minutes to go in the first half, the long drive was capped off by an 8-yard run from QB Carlos Del Rio to extend the lead to 14-0. The Indians would hold on to the two-touchdown lead as they headed into the locker room at halftime.
At halftime, North Cobb’s Athletic Director, Matt Williams, expressed his optimism for the following half, explaining “They (McEachern) had one sustained drive that hurt us. Their depth could play a factor in this game late, but our boys have played phenomenal. The two fumbles cost us, but we get the ball to start the next half and we’re still very much in this game.”
Adhering to the trend of big defensive stops, both teams forced one another to punt to open the third quarter. Gearing up for their second drive of the half, the Warrior’s brought in freshman QB Malachi Singleton, looking to provide a spark to the offense. However, a few plays later McEachern fell on their third fumble recovery of the game, taking over with great field position at the Warrior’s 20 yard line. North Cobb would hold the Indians to only a field goal, making the game 17-0 heading to the 4th.
To begin the fourth quarter, the Warriors found themselves in another fourth and long situation, but elected to go for it instead of punt. They were unable to convert as McEachern sacked the Warriors for a turnover on downs, taking over possession across midfield at the 41 yard line. McEachern was then able to break the game open, adding long touchdown runs by Jordan Simmons and Christian Mason to make the score 31-7. Following a late field goal by the Indians, North Cobb was able to reach the end zone on a kickoff returned for a touchdown by Joshua Josephs with only fifteen seconds left in the contest.
McEachern would go on to win 34-7, improving to 9-0 on the season, and 4-0 in region play. Meanwhile, the Warriors suffered their second consecutive region loss, falling to 6-3 on the season, and 2-2 in region play.
McEachern will conclude their regular season next week as they travel to North Paulding, and the Warriors will look to finish strong as they finish on the road against Hillgrove.