CUMMING - Ed Russ passed for 159 yards and two touchdowns, and Mill Creek used two second-quarter interceptions to set-up short scoring drives to cruise to a 35-0 victory over South Forsyth at War Eagle Stadium Friday night.
Brandon Hayman added three catches for 94 yards with two for scores. Zach Landis had a touchdown reception in his three grabs for 46 yards. Russ finished the night 10 of 15 passing in the teams' season finale.
"It was a total team effort tonight, and probably the best game we have played all year," Hawks head coach Shannon Jarvis said. "We played a great game tonight against a good South Forsyth team."
After a scoreless first quarter, Mill Creek (6-4, 4-4 Region 7-AAAAA) scored on a 52-yard pass from Russ to Hayman to cap a seven-play, 80-yard drive. As Hayman crossed the goal line, the entire Hawk bench emptied into the end zone in a University of Georgia-like celebration vs. Florida during the 2007 season. A contrite Jarvis was not amused.
"I want to apologize to South Forsyth and their team. That is not the way we do things here," Jarvis said.
Hawks safety Casey Windom intercepted a Nick Belyew pass in South Forsyth (3-7, 2-6) territory late in the second quarter. Three plays later, Tyler Cierski appeared to score a touchdown, when he fumbled the ball into the end zone and offensive lineman Austin Hagan recovered for the score. Brian Heinze kicked the PAT for the 14-0 lead.
On the second play from scrimmage following the touchdown, War Eagle back-up quarterback Tyler Renner was picked off by Cody Rediger, who returned the ball to the 12-yard line. That set up another Mill Creek touchdown two plays later as Chris Avery took a pitch on a reverse and passed to Landis. Landis made a leaping grab in the right corner of the end zone to push the margin to 21-0 at the half.
Cierski took a handoff on the first play from scrimmage in the second half, and rumbled 80 yards for a score. He finished with 112 yards on nine carries. Russ found favorite target, Hayman, for a 44-yard strike early in the fourth quarter.
Jarvis was pleased with a Hawk defense that forced five turnovers, including four interceptions, while holding South Forsyth to seven first downs. He also enjoyed the shutout.
"The shutout was big for our team, and big for us to send the seniors out on that note," Jarvis said. "(The seniors) have laid a good foundation, the young kids played well, and hopefully we can use this as a springboard going into off-season workouts and next year."