• Tyler Harden

Travis Hunter and Sam Horn lead Collins Hill past Milton 24-8 to win 7A State Championship

Photo Credit: The Atlanta Journal Constitution (Jason Getz)

ATLANTA, GEORGIA— The Collins Hill Eagles have made it a long way up to this state championship game. Cornerback, wide receiver, and number-1 player in the country, Travis Hunter, and quarterback, Sam Horn, have had a lot to do with bringing the Collins Hill football program to where they are. After falling short in the state championship last year to Grayson 38-14, the Eagles were destined to make it back to state to end Hunter and Horn’s high school career off in championship fashion. In order to do that, however, they had to get through the Milton Eagles.


The Milton Eagles, led by the number-3 player in the Class of 2023, Lebbeus Overton, are also one of the top teams in the country, and some believed they were one of the only programs in Georgia that were able to take down Collins Hill. But Collins Hill has been dominating all season, and Travis Hunter and Sam Horn made sure they ended their legacy by giving Collins Hill their first state championship in school history.


The first quarter showed why this matchup was going to be a defensive battle. Milton ate 8:31 off the clock on their first possession, but was still unable to get in the end zone after a sack from linebacker, Dion Crawford, forced a 4th down. But Collins Hill was unable to get much going on the offensive side of the ball as well, and the first quarter ended with both teams yet to get on the board.


Both teams traded punts to start the second quarter, but Milton was able to end the drought of big plays. Quarterback, Devin Farrell, broke free for a run and a large gain to the Collins Hill 39-yard line. But Collins Hill held them from there, and forced another punt. Collins Hill then found a rhythm, and went down the field all the way to the Milton 10-yard line. Sam Horn then capped off the drive with a 10-yard touchdown pass to Spenser Anderson, putting Collins Hill up 7-0 (PAT good).


Running back, Jordan McDonald, provided another spark for Milton on their next drive. He ran for a large gain to bring the Eagles to the Collins Hill 46-yard line. But the Collins Hill defense continued to control Milton, and they came up with a stop on 4th and 1 to force a turnover on downs. After the Collins Hill offense got to midfield, the Milton defense made an impact. Safety, Bryce Thornton, came up with an interception for Milton, and gave the offense the ball at their own 40-yard line. The first half ended with Collins Hill in the lead 7-0.


Sam Horn and Travis Hunter got Collins Hill going to start the second half. The duo connected with each other twice, including a 50-yard pass from Horn to Hunter, to bring Collins Hill to Milton 30-yard line. Sam Horn capped off the drive himself with a 10-yard rushing touchdown, putting Collins Hill up 14-0 (PAT good).


Collins Hill kept going late in the third quarter. After Sam Horn found Spenser Anderson to bring Collins Hill to the Milton 6-yard line, he connected with Travis Hunter once again, this time for a 6-yard touchdown, extending Collins Hill’s lead to 21-0 (PAT good).


Travis Hunter then showed why he is one of the best players in the country on both sides of the ball. The Florida State commit forced a fumble from Milton, and Collins Hill recovered the fumble at Milton’s 49-yard line. After Hunter caught a 39-yard pass from Sam Horn down the left sideline, the third quarter ended with Collins Hill in the lead 21-0.


Horn started the fourth quarter with a pass to Jaylen George to bring Collins Hill to the Milton 5-yard line. But the Milton defense didn’t let them in the end zone, and Collins Hill had to settle for a 26-yard field goal to make the score 24-0.


Bryce Thornton made another big play for Milton after the Collins Hill score, as he took the kickoff return all the way to the Collins Hill 29-yard line. After Collins Hill forced 4th and 13 for Milton, Devin Farrell got Milton to the Collins Hill 3-yard line with a pass to Adam Freas. Farrell then capped off the drive with a 1-yard touchdown, putting Milton on the board (2-point conversion good).


Collins Hill worked to drain the clock as they continued to move down the field. After Collins Hill went down the field to the Milton 7-yard line, Collins Hill prepared to celebrate their first state championship in school history with a 24-8 win over Milton.


Collins Hill completes their perfect season with a 15-0 record, and wins their first 7A State Championship in school history. Collins Hill will arguably be ranked as the number-1 team in the state of Georgia to end the season, and will remain ranked as one of the top teams in the country. Milton ends their season with a 13-2 record.

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