Ty Clemons was effective as usual and perhaps as efficient as ever for McEachern on Friday.
The senior quarterback passed for 211 yards and three touchdowns – all to TJ Rahming – and rushed for 144 yards in less than three quarters to lead the second-ranked Indians to a 43-30 victory against Marietta at Northcutt Stadium.
Clemons was 9-of-12 passing, and all three of his completions to Rahming went for first half touchdowns – covering 80, 54 and 20 yards – as the Indians built a 30-9 halftime lead. Malik Williams had the other six receptions from Clemons for 57 yards.
Marietta hung with the Indians through much of the first half, but the game got away from the Blue Devils midway through the second quarter when McEachern (4-0, 2-0) scored 16 points in a minute and half to take a 23-9 lead.
Taj Griffin gave the Indians their first lead when he took a pitch from Clemons, cut back across the middle of the field and ran 30 yards for a touchdown. Dennis Dominguez’s extra point made it 14-9 with 8:11 to play in the first half.
The Indians added to the lead 38 seconds later when Marietta, backed up to its 1-yard line after three penalties on its next possession, snapped the ball out of the end zone for a safety. The Indians needed just two plays after the free kick to score again, this time on Clemons’ 54-yard pass to Rahling for a 23-9 lead with 6:42 to play in the half.
Marietta went 49 yards in 11 plays on its first possession of the second half and scored on a quarterback sneak by Brenton Martin to cut the lead to 30-16. But McEachern answered quickly with a five-play, 80-yard drive to regain the 21-point lead. Clemons sparked the drive with a 65-yard run on the first play. He also set up the touchdown with a 12-yard run to the 3 that turned out to be his final play of the night as he was shaken up on the hit and sat out the rest of the way.
Martin threw three touchdown passes for Marietta in addition to his scoring run.
The second quarter was a reflection of the season as a whole for Marietta. The Blue Devils were impressive in averaging 57.5 points in season-opening victories against Newnan and Pope. Once region play began, however, Marietta (2-2, 0-2) has struggled, losing consecutive games against Hillgrove and McEachern to fall to 0-2 in 4-AAAAAA.
McEachern – 7-23-7-6 – 43
Marietta – 9-0-7-14 – 30
Ma – Jordan Mathis 31 pass from Brenton Martin (Ian Shannon kick)
Mc – TJ Rahming 80 pass from Ty Clemons (Dennis Dominguez kick)\
Ma – Safety (runner tackled in end zone)
Mc – Taj Griffin 30 run (Dominguez kick)
Mc – Safety (ball snapped out of end zone)
Mc – Rahming 54 pass from Clemons (Dominguez kick)
Mc – Rahming 20 pass from Clemons (Dominguez kick)
Ma – Martin 1 run (Shannon kick)
Mc – Alizee Chubbs 3 run (Dominguez kick)
Ma – Marcus Bennett 13 pass from Martin (Shannon kick)
Mc – Chubbs 3 run (kick blocked)
Ma – Mathis 50 pass from Martin (Shannon kick)