SNELLVILLE — Delayed hours for lightning, Brookwood and Collins Hill ran back onto the field amid a downpour at 11:15 p.m., ready to slog their way through the final quarter and change.
Brookwood was rolling on some momentum right before the second delay, cutting the Eagles' lead to 14-11 on a touchdown by Alexander Diggs.
The Broncos kicked the point-after to restart the game, but then Isaiah Love steamrolled Collins Hill to the 28-12 victory that ended after midnight.
Love slammed the door on Brookwood, breaking second-half runs of 70 and 62 yards.
The first set up a short score for quarterback Sam Horn. The second, with 5:13 left in the game, was all the way to the end zone.
“One of the advantages when we had all that time to wait, we were able to see some things that were working, so we felt like (those holes) were there (for Love),” Eagles head coach Lenny Gregory said. “Once we settled down after, what, the fourth time we came out here, I just told them to be patient and do what we do.
“They did. A couple of those things popped and Isaiah had a big second half.”
Love ran for nearly 250 yards in the second half.
“I'm pleased, too, we were dispersing the ball a little bit,” Gregory said. “It wasn't just him. But yeah, there were some things we saw that we were able to take advantage with. It helped having that break.”
Last week, Collins Hill (2-1) was delayed played top-ranked Marietta and it hurt.
Keeping the players focused during two hour-long delays fell to the coaches. They used the time to break up into position groups and go over sideline film.
“It's hard,” Gregory said. “But we always say we need to be laser focused. No talking. No goofing around. Our kids have done a good job this year of really buying into that ability to tune things out.
“They overcame adversity. I can't even say how proud I am of them.”
Collins Hill suffered from a number of costly early penalties, but cleaned it up after the first quarter and took a 7-5 lead into halftime.
Brookwood (1-3) put up the first points, sacking Horn in the end zone at 7:04 of the opening quarter.
A 57-yard completion from Horn to Jalen Johnson, who bulldozed his way to the bulk of those yards after the catch, went for naught as the final series of the first quarter stalled at Broookwood's 25.
The Eagles defense forced a three-and-out to start the second quarter and went 80 yards on nine plays to take a 7-2 lead. A 38-yard strike to Logan Brown from Horn was the pivotal play of the drive. Horn's passes of 12 and 7 yards to Johnson and Brown, respectively, brought Collins Hill inside the 10. The sophomore found Brown again for the touchdown with 6:48 left in the half.
Brookwood cut the gap to 7-5 on a 25-yard field goal by Dan Le-Hernandez just before the break.
Just as the teams were getting set to come out for the second half, lightning in the area suspended play. The delay lasted 52 minutes.
“We show our youth and it pops out, but then as you watch, you see the talent we have,” Gregory said. “You have to show them why you can't make those mistakes and why you have to keep your composure.”
Brookwood's attempted onside kick to start the second half was ruled to have not touched the ground and Collins Hill jumped on the short field to push its lead to 14-5.
The Eagles started on the Bronco 44 and went to Love.
The senior ripped off 21 yards on the first play and then found a big hole in the middle for the touchdown. Love's 23-yard score came 37 seconds into the third quarter.
Brookwood had two prime chances to answer.
A huge 51-yard run by Eli Kohl, hauled down at the 2, was negated by a holding penalty and turned the ball over on downs. Michael Haynes stepped into front of a Horn pass two plays later for an interception and field position at the Eagles' 35. Collins Hill smothered the Broncos on the drive. Brookwood turned it over on downs after three incomplete passes and a short run by Diggs.
The next chance didn't get wasted.
Joel Seton scooped up a ball dropped by a scrambling Horn near midfield and rumbled to the 14 yard line. Kohl converted on a fourth-and-1 to set up Diggs' short TD run with 2:43 left in the third quarter. Another lightning delay sent the teams running for locker rooms before the PAT could be attempted.
The Eagles led 14-11 when the game was delayed a second time.
“The thing about Brookwood, and there's no secret, they are very physical with a big offensive line,” Gregory said. “All week I was concerned about how that was going to match out. But our kids are gritty. They showed up and made some good plays.
“We knew we had to stop the run game. I don't know that we stopped it, but we contained it.”
COLLINS HILL 28, BROOKWOOD 12
Collins Hill 0 7 14 7 — 28
Brookwood 2 3 7 0 — 12
Brookwood: Safety (Sam Horn sacked in end zone) 7:04
Collins Hill: Logan Brown 6 pass from San Horn (Isaac Bonacci kick) 6:48
Brookwood: Jake Cartmill 25 FG, 0:24
Collins Hill: Isaiah Love 23 runs (Bonacci kick) 11:23
Brookwood: Alexander Diggs 3 run (Cartmill kick) 2:43
Collins Hill: Sam Horn 1 run (Bonacci kick) 1:20
Collins Hill: Love 62 run (Bonacci kick) 5:13