Game: Creekview (2-1) at Cambridge (1-1), Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Last meeting: Creekview 27, Cambridge 3 (Aug. 23, 2019)
All-time series: Creekview leads 8-0
Prediction: Creekview 21, Cambridge 10
Two teams with a budding history will square off Friday for the ninth-straight season.
Creekview (2-1) will travel to Cambridge (1-1) and looks to keep its perfect 8-0 record against the Bears intact. This will be the Region 7AAAAAA opener for both teams.
The Grizzlies are coming off a 14-9 loss to Cherokee, but they should feel good about the play of their defense. Creekview held Cherokee to its lowest point total of the season and it is surrendering only 9.6 points per game. Facing a team with returning starters at quarterback, running back and receiver, it will need another similar effort this week.
“(Cambridge) was young a year ago but they have a lot of guys back,” Creekview coach Trevor Williams said, “Coach (Craig) Bennett does a great job getting those guys to play hard.”
Cambridge running back Phillip-Michael Collins was the leading rusher for the Bears a season ago and he returned to form in the season opener against North Oconee, finishing with 70 yards and three touchdowns. The quarterback to receiver combination of junior Zach Harris to senior Hayden Gardella was effective last fall and should once again be an area of concern for every team Cambridge faces. A Division I baseball prospect, Harris has the arm talent to beat teams through the air.
Creekview’s secondary recorded two interceptions last week with Owen Mello and Nick Stewart. It used press coverage to disrupt the Cherokee passing game and continue to produce an effective pass rush. Senior linebacker Grant Anderson and junior safety Cale Williams lead the Grizzlies in tackles, with Anderson currently second in Cherokee County with seven tackles for loss.
Offensively, Creekview’s passing game began to find a rhythm last week with quarterback Brody Rhodes completing a season-high 14 passes for 130 yards. Receiver Dawson Currie leads Creekview with eight receptions for 71 yards.
Rhodes also finished with 73 rushing yards along with his first rushing score of the season. The centerpiece of Creekview’s offense should remain running back Tyler Stevens who enters the game third in Cherokee County with 301 rushing yards on 64 carries (4.7 average).
Creekview finished with 14 penalties in last week’s game, something Williams said has been a focus at practices this week.
“For us, we try to differentiate effort penalties from procedural penalties,” Williams said. “The illegal formations, blocking in the back, we’ve gotta clean those up. This week really has been a lot about us and fixing those mistakes.”