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Cedar Grove reclaims the crown, defeats Savannah Christian for 3A title

Coach John Adams and the Cedar Grove Saints celebrate their 2023 GHSA 3A championship win

The Cedar Grove Saints had to wait a full year for the moment they had on Wednesday as they celebrated winning the 2023 Georgia High School Association Class 3A state championship after defeating Savannah Christian 49-28, their fifth state title in seven years. However, this time last year, the Saints would find themselves on the wrong end of controversy as a touchdown call in the 2022 title game against Sandy Creek would eventually lead to a Saints title game loss.

With no video replay available at the time that could have potentially overturned the call, the Saints had to walk away from Centre Parc Stadium as runner-ups and wait for the start of the 2023 season to begin their journey to reclaim the what could have been rightfully theirs last season. "Any time you don't come out on top in games or you lose a game, people questions stuff," Cedar Grove head coach, John Adams, said after Wednesday win, referring to the Saints slow start in which they lost five of their first seven games.

"I just told my guys to stay together, just continue to fight, just continue to practice, continue to take it one day at a time and they just listened to me and it worked out in the end, we ended up victorious," Adams said of the message he gave his players throughout the season. Adams and his staff would see the messgae help Cedar Grove streak their way to the championship game, winning seven straight, claiming a region title enroute to their showdown with Savannah Christian on Wednesday.

And while the Raiders would strike first, the Saints would immidiately respond with 14 straight points to take a 14-7 lead and despite a few defensive penalties in the first half, Cedar Grove would seemingly be in control of the game from that point, withstanding a reponse from Savnnah Christian that would tie the game at 14-14. However, after the Saints would take a 21-14 lead, their defense, appearing to have settled in, would come up with a key stop that kept the Raiders from once again tying the game.

Unable to capitolize off the turnover, the Saints would punt the ball back to the Raiders, but on the ensuing possession, another Cedar Grove interception would set up an eventual Elliott Colson touchdown pass to Devin Carter leading to a 28-14 lead for the Saints. Cedar Grove would tack on two more touchdowns to go up 42-14 and would eventually pick up the 49-28 win. "Kudos to my team and kudos for them believing in me and just really proud of them today," Adams added.


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