"The defense played outstanding," said Colonels' coach Rick Casko, whose defense came away with four interceptions on the night.
After yielding two 50-plus yard touchdown receptions in the third quarter, Cass thwarted Johns Creek's attempts to cut further into its lead.
Gladiator quarterback Skye Overton's 24-yard run in the fourth quarter gave his team a first down at the Colonel 44-yard line following the successful fourth-and-five conversion on a fake punt.
On third-and-10, however, Cass senior linebacker Deion Loyal picked off Overton's pass over the middle at the 30.
The Colonels would punt the ball back to Johns Creek with 2:22 remaining in the game.
Following an illegal substitution penalty against the Gladiators, who had 12 men on the field, Overton handed off to Blake Storm on first-and-15 from their own 35. Storm prepared to execute a halfback pass, but the ball slipped from his grip and went straight up in the air.
Another one of Cass' linebackers again came down with the interception, as Hunter Purvine secured the ball, and the win, at the Colonels' 44.
Cass bled the final 2:14 off the clock to grab its second win of the season.
"It's a win," Casko said. "It's not the way we want to finish, but a win's a win."
While Casko may have had qualms about the way the Colonels finished, Johns Creek coach Mike Cloy had a similar feeling about how his players started.
"I wasn't happy with what we did (in the first half), but it wasn't all us," Cloy said. "They took it to us. ... We're proud (our players) came back. They didn't lay down; they fought back."
Cass, which struggled to convert once crossing the 50 last week against Rome, had very few of those problems early on against the Gladiators.
A three and out by Johns Creek and a 31-yard punt from Grant Brown let the Colonels begin their initial drive at the Gladiators' 38-yard line after Tarris Batiste's 8-yard return.
Elijah Windom completed a 14-yard pass to Jozell Payne on third-and-12 from the 30 and Windom's 8-yard run a couple of plays later notched one more first down for Cass.
Michael Saunders took Windom's inside handoff and found the end zone from 5 yards out with 7:11 in the first quarter. The Colonels led 7-0 after an extra point by Guadalupe Rangel, who went a perfect 4-for-4 on the night.
Cass' next drive began on its 30-yard line with 3:54 in the first quarter. The Colonels converted three third-down plays, including a 15-yard pass from Windom to Jay Stephens on third-and-five from the 35 and a 38-yard run from Saunders on third-and-inches, which put the ball on the Johns Creek 2.
Three plays later, Saunders had his second TD of the night on a 1-yard dive up the middle. The successful extra point made it 14-0 with 11:52 left in the second quarter.
Neither team scored on its third possession of the ball game, but the Colonels found themselves back in business when the Gladiators' fourth possession ended with the game's first turnover as Batiste intercepted Overton at the Johns Creek 49.
The next few plays featured a heavy dosage of Saunders, who ran five times for 37 yards to move the ball to the Gladiator 17.
After a Johns Creek encroachment penalty on third-and-inches gave Cass a first down, Windom threw a wide receiver screen to Batiste, who fought his way in for a 12-yard TD pass to put the Colonels up 21-0 with 4:59 in the half.
Cass was not done with its scoring following an interception by senior defensive back Sam Taylor, who returned the ball 63 yards, all the way down to the Gladiator 3. A personal foul on the Colonels moved the ball back to Johns Creek's 18-yard line.
It mattered little as Windom hooked up with Payne on second-and-12 for a beautiful up-and-out pass, which Payne hauled in for a 20-yard score.
Cass led 28-0 following Rangel's fourth extra point with 2:15 before halftime.
"The offense moved the ball," said Casko, whose team had 185 first-half yards. "They (Gladiators) were good against the run, but they hadn't seen a spread (offense)."
A fumbled snap by Windom ended the Colonels' opening possession of the second half, but the Gladiators could not take advantage as Brown badly shanked a 35-yard field goal to the left.
Johns Creek made the most of Cass' next turnover, which came on an interception by Paul Asbell on a pass from Windom.
The Gladiators took over at their own 34 and faced a third-and-four from the 40 when Taylor gambled on an out route, allowing John Grayson to complete a 54-yard TD pass to Matt Azemar. Kyle Fowler's extra point with 5:28 in the third made it 28-7.
Albert Catron initially dropped the ensuing kickoff before giving the Colonels great field position with a 47-yard return.
Saunders' 30-yard run followed up the brilliant return, giving Cass first-and-goal from the 6-yard line.
Saunders' next run went for 1 yard, Windom's completion to Batiste went for none and Stephens' 2-yard run set up a fourth-and-goal from the 2.
Saunders, who finished with 135 yards on 22 carries, couldn't convert as he appeared to slip on the play.
Facing a third-and-eight from well within their own territory, the Gladiators were primed to give up two points on a safety when Overton wiggled free and let go of a pass that Jay Barden pulled down at the 39.
Barden outraced the Cass secondary for a 97-yard TD pass. A bobbled snap led to a successful two-point conversion pass from Palmer Antz to Tommy Welch, who stretched across the goal line to pull his team within 13 points with 35 seconds left in the third.
"The momentum turned a little. They were playing with a little more energy," Casko said, adding that Loyal's interception stopped that momentum.
Cass (2-1, 2-1 Region 7-AAAA) travels to Sequoyah next week to face the Chiefs (1-2, 1-2).
1 2 3 4 F
JCR 0 0 15 0 15
CAS 7 21 0 0 28
CAS -- Michael Saunders 5-yd run (Guadalupe Rangel kick)
CAS -- Saunders 1-yd run (Rangel kick)
CAS -- Tarris Batiste 12-yd pass from Elijah Windom (Rangel kick)
CAS -- Jozell Payne 20-yd pass from Windom (Rangel kick)
JCR -- Matt Azemar 54-yd pass from John Grayson (Kyle Fowler kick)
JCR -- Jay Barden 97-yd pass from Overton (Tommy Welch two-point conversion from Palmer Antz)
TEAM STATS JCR CAS
1st downs 6 13
Rushes-yds 22-55 31-183
Passing yds 195 87
Comp-Att-Int 13-23-4 10-19-1
Total yds 250 270
Penalties 7-49 6-40
Fumbles-lost 2-0 1-1
Punts-yds 4-114 2-76
Rushing -- Johns Creek: Skye Overton 9-44, Austin Poncelet 9-13, Blake Storm 4-(-2); Cass: Michael Saunders 22-135-2, Elijah Windom 5-28, Tarris Batiste 1-10, Jay Stephens 3-10.
Passing -- Johns Creek: Overton 11-20-135-1-2, John Grayson 2-2-60-1-0, Storm 0-1-0-0-1; Cass: Windom 10-19-87-2-1.
Receiving -- Johns Creek: Jay Barden 4-109-1, Matt Azemar 3-58-1, Ben Deck 5-21, Poncelet 1-7; Cass: Jozell Payne 4-50-1, Stephens 1-15, Batiste 2-12-1, Saunders 2-7, Chad Taylor 1-3.