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Less-heralded players come up big in Grayson win

Grayson has seven players with Division I scholarship offers, led by the nation's top recruit Robert Nkemdiche.

The nation got to see Nkemdiche in action on Friday in ESPN's game against nationally ranked Miami Central, but players without scholarship offers yet made a big impact in the Rams' 35-3 win.

Defensive lineman Marquis Motley was disruptive along the defensive line, quarterback David McTier threw for 120 yards and a TD and running back Jordan Germany rushed for 82 yards, including a 66-yard TD. Germany also had three tackles, one tackle for loss and 1 sacks on defense.

"That's what high school football is all about and that's what I love about this team," Grayson head coach Mickey Conn said. "They have talent of their own. They may not be as tall or as big, but they are good football players. When you've got a team that's unified like that, you're going to win a lot of games."

Kicking it into gear

Archer head coach Andy Dyer knows that his offense doesn't have to cross the goal line to be dangerous. Place kicker Zach Wachholz proved that on Friday night.

Archer's first two drives of the season each got off to a good start, but each stalled in a part of the field where most high school coaches would elect to go for it on fourth down.

But Dyer has a true weapon in Wachholz, and the right-footed kicker came through with two field goals, hitting on 48 and 42 yards.

"We stalledon some drives early but it's nice to know that you can rely on him," Dyer said. Dyer also said that he thought Wachholz's 48-yarder tied his career best.

Wachholz was also effective on his kickoffs as seven of his eight kickoffs went for touchbacks.

Goin' to the Chapple

Junior Rafe Chapple is 2-0 as a starter for GAC after taking over the starting job before the start of the season. Chapple went a productive 8-for-14 for 120 yards with one TDand no interceptions against Savannah.

The GAC offense put up 31 points onSavannah, but it was the Spartans' defense and special teams that set the table.Junior Ross Wood's interception set up the first TD forGACand the Spartans'special teamsforced a bad snap from the Blue Jackets' punt team to set up another TD.

Eagle Walk debuts

Collins Hill began a new tradition with its first Eagle Walk prior to Friday night's game with Central Gwinnett.

As the home fans looked to their left from the stands, the players walked through a path that was cut between the trees behind the end zone. The Screaming Eagle Marching Band formed a line at the bottom of the walk to bring the players onto the field.

The school also paid its respects to former parent and Touchdown Club member Brett Heinicke, who died last December after a heart attack. He was just 50.

Collins Hill's players wore "BH" stickers on their helmets and his initials also were painted on the field at the 50-yard line.

Showing their skill

Central Gwinnett's Eman Westmoreland was a known commodity coming into the season, but the crop of playmakers surrounding him made names for themselves in Friday night's win over Collins Hill.

Running back Johnathan Hawkins had 23 carries for 82 yards and a touchdown, leading the way. He also had three catches for 26 yards.

"Johnathan Hawkins ran his butt off," Central head coach Todd Wofford said. "He's a sophomore and he's got two more years to do it. He's heard about all these other great backs in Gwinnett and he wants to be up there with them."

Justin Brownlee also had a huge game with five catches for 104 yards and three rushes for 14 yards. Chris Shelling caught three passes for 37 yards, including a 23-yard TD, and Zedekiah Brown caught a team-high six passes for 44 yards.

Good start, tough finish

South quarterback Jordan Ramey got off to a quick start Friday against Norcross, throwing for 98 of his 142 yards in the first half.

The senior was 9 of 16 in the first half with a 7-yard touchdown. He kept things rolling on the first drive of the second half, leading the team to an open-drive score that he capped with a perfect throw 35 yards to Coray Keel while running under pressure from the Norcross front line. But from there, he completed just two more passes the rest of the game for 10 total yards.

Quick turnaround

It wasn't long after Norcross finished off its comeback win against South Gwinnett that head coach Keith Maloof started talking about the next game.

And with a Thursday game, he had reason to start looking forward.

Norcross plays Parkview on Thursday, taking away a day of preparation for the Blue Devils (and Panthers), but for Maloof the loss of a day won't factor too much.

"We've had a lot of time off," he said, noting they had a week off between their scrimmage and Week 1. "Physically, hopefully, hopefully we'll bounce back really quick.

"I knew this one was going to be physical so we backed off of them last week so hopefully we'll get back in the swing of things and it won't hurt."

Rare blowout

Mill Creek's 35-0 rout of Dacula behind 209 yards and three TDs from Jacorey Lewis produced a rarity in what has become one of Gwinnett's most hotly contested neighborhood rivalries.

It was only the second time in seven meetings that the game was decided by more than one score, with each of the last five being decided by eight points or less.

In fact, the Hawks' 35-point margin was the largest in the series history and one more point than Dacula's 34-0 win in the series' inaugural game in 2006.

-- Sports Editor Will Hammock, staff writers Ben Beitzel, Brandon Brigman and David Friedlander, senior correspondent Scott Smith and staff correspondent Steve Argo contributed to this report