Put JP Peduzzi anywhere on the gridiron: quarterback, wide receiver, placekicker, he’ll do it all. On Friday night, the senior added his name to the record books of an accomplished program as Hilton Head Christian Academy soared past Colleton Prep at home, 45-20.
After recording a passing, rushing, and receiving touchdown for the third straight game, Peduzzi now stands alone as the Eagles’ all-time leader in points and touchdowns.
“It feels great”, Peduzzi said. “My team’s been working hard to let me do that, and I’d like to thank all of the guys throughout the years who I’ve played with.”
It was the elite Junkyard Dog defense that spurred the early scores. After a Colleton Prep fumble, the Eagles fired up the offense. A powerful Cameron Strickland run set up a 9-yard sweep by Jace Blackshear, stiff-arming a War Hawk and finding the end zone to open the scoring.
The visitors were eying a response driving into Eagle territory, but were picked off on fourth down by Riley Shinn, who nearly ran it all the way back. On the ensuing play, Peduzzi was forced to scramble and throw on the run, but still slung it right on the money to Jace Blackshear in the back of the end zone for another 9-yard score.
Then it was Guy Annunziata joining the turnover party, recovering a fumble to set up his squad in plus territory. After a high snap followed by a dropped pass, the Eagles faced fourth-and-19. But it was no sweat for the high-flying offense, as Blackshear dialed one across the middle to Peduzzi to continue the drive before hooking up with him again on a 4-yard bullet to the end zone.
Peduzzi completed the touchdown trifecta with a 31-yard run of his own, finding a lane near the sideline after probing the middle and racing past several lurking War Hawks on his way to the goal line. Blackshear added another score on a 52-yard punt return, and Peduzzi used his leg to boot a 30-yard field goal, giving HHCA a commanding 38-0 halftime lead.
The Eagles eventually took their foot off the gas, but not before an impressive dime from quarterback James Crosby to receiver Blaine McClure. Watch out, they’ve got some young guys, too.
“We just came out here to win again, and we want to keep building that momentum we were carrying, and tonight we wanted to get some of our other guys in to get them some playing time so that they’re ready to go in if needed,” Peduzzi said.
HHCA’s defense was outstanding once again, forcing five turnovers and running a shutout streak to over four quarters before the War Hawks scored in the second half.
“The defense, they’re great,” Peduzzi said. “Throughout the past few years we’ve been building this defense and this year it’s really coming in strong. We hope to continue to be great. Our goal is to win a state championship, and that’s what we’re going to do.”
HHCA (4-0, 2-0) travels to Pinewood Prep next Friday.
Written by Wes Kerr / Photo by Brooke Simons
Wes Kerr is a graduate of Hilton Head Island High School and Davidson College. He has a passion for statistics and analytics.
Brooke Simons is a student-athlete at Hilton Head Island High School and an aspiring journalist. She has a passion for photography and broadcasting.