Tigers making history
Published 9:06 pm Monday, October 22, 2018
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
It’s already been a historic season for the Troup Tigers.
With last week’s victory over Cedartown, Troup became the first football team in the history of the school to win eight or more games in three straight years.
The Tigers are hoping they’ll have more records to break in the coming weeks.
Troup improved to 8-0 overall and 4-0 in Region 5-AAAA with the 20-13 win over Cedartown.
If Troup gets a road win over Central-Carroll on Friday, it will head into next week’s showdown with Cartersville at 9-0 for the first time ever.
Also this week, the Callaway Cavaliers will try to bounce back from their heart-breaking loss to Heard County.
Heard County scored with two seconds left in the game to hand Callaway a 13-10 loss.
Callaway (7-2 overall), which fell to second place in the region with a 4-1 record with the loss to Heard, will finish the regular season with Thursday’s home game at Jordan.
LaGrange (1-7 overall), which was eliminated from the playoff chase in Region 5-AAAA with a 3-2 loss to Sandy Creek, will host Chapel Hill on Friday.
In private-school football, Lafayette Christian School is off this week after beating Fullington Academy 34-0 last week to improve to 3-0 in the region.
Unity Preparatory Academy of West Georgia will be on the road against Lanier Christian Academy on Friday.
Troup’s final two regular-season games will be on the road, beginning with Friday’s trip to Central-Carroll.
Troup has already matched the best start in school history after reaching the eight-win mark for the third straight season.
Since going 1-9 in 2015, Troup is 25-6 the past three seasons.
“Who would have thought it three years ago,” said Tanner Glisson, Troup’s head coach since 2015. “It’s absolutely amazing. I’m proud of these kids.”
A win over Central-Carroll sets up a likely showdown between 9-0 teams in the regular-season finale.
“We’ve got to take care of Central, because we want to go undefeated into Cartersville,” Glisson said.
Troup stayed perfect with a hard-fought win over visiting Cedartown.
Cedartown had the ball late with an opportunity to tie it or even take the lead with a touchdown and a two-point conversion, but Troup’s defense was up to the challenge.
A Cedartown fourth-down play inside the Troup 20-yard line failed with a little more than two minutes to go.
Troup picked up a pair of first downs on runs by quarterback Kobe Hudson to end the suspense.
“That was a down to the wire game,” Glisson said. “I feel like if they score (at the end), they’re going for two.”
It was tied 13-13 in the fourth quarter when Hudson threw a touchdown pass to Joko Willis to give Troup the lead.
Hudson also had two touchdown runs covering seven and 10 yards.
No matter what happens this week, Troup’s position in the region won’t change. Win or lose, Troup is going to finish first or second in the region, depending on what happens in the Cartersville game.
The situation is drastically different for Central-Carroll (2-6 overall), which is 1-3 in the region and needs a win to stay in the chase for one of the region’s four playoff spots.
The Callaway Cavaliers also know they’ll be in the playoffs, and they could still finish anywhere from first to third in the region.
Callaway would have won the Region 5-AA championship with a win over Heard County, and it was in position to make that happen until the closing moments.
Alijah Huzzie tossed a 27-yard touchdown pass to LeQuincy Shepherd with two seconds remaining to cap the comeback win.
Callaway led 10-0 before Heard County scored touchdowns on its final two possessions.
Callaway got a 4-yard touchdown run from Cartavious “Tank” Bigsby and a 42-yard field goal from Hunter Williamson to seize the 10-0 lead early in the fourth quarter.
Callaway had the ball late with a chance to salt the game away with a first down, but Heard County made the stop and drove 80 yards for the winning touchdown.
“We’re going to learn from our mistakes, and we’re going to keep growing,” Callaway head coach Pete Wiggins said. “That’s just the mindset of our coaching staff. That’s the mindset of our team. So again, it was a tough loss, but we’re going to learn from it and we’re going to get better.”
If Callaway beats Jordan on Thursday, it will complete an 8-2 regular season, and it will be off next week before the start of the region playoffs.
This is the 12th straight season Callaway has won at least seven games in the regular season.
Jordan (2-6 overall) is 1-2 in the region, and it still has a chance to earn a playoff spot.
For LaGrange, it’s all about trying to finish the season on a positive note.
Even at 0-4 in Region 5-AAAA, LaGrange headed into last week’s game with Sandy Creek with an opportunity to make the playoffs.
Despite holding Sandy Creek to a field goal, LaGrange’s playoff hopes were dashed with the 3-2 loss.
Trailing 3-0 late in the first half, LaGrange got on the board with a safety when the snap to Sandy Creek’s punter went over his head and out of the end zone.
That was it for the scoring as Sandy Creek (5-3 overall) improved to 2-2 in the region and strengthened its playoff position.
LaGrange is 0-5 in the region, and three of those losses have been by a combined eight points.
THIS WEEK’S GAMES
Jordan at Callaway, 7 p.m.
Chapel Hill at LaGrange, 7:30 p.m.
Troup at Central-Carroll, 7:30 p.m.
Unity Prep at Lanier Christian, 7:30 p.m.