Game day for Cavaliers
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
It’s a week later than expected, but the Callaway Cavaliers are ready to play their Region 5-AA opener.
Callaway was supposed to play Haralson County last week, but the game had to be postponed because of Covid-19 issues.
Instead, Callaway’s first region game will be on Friday against Bremen, with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m. at Callaway Stadium.
Callaway made it through a challenging non-region schedule with a 4-0 record, and it rallied for a 16-14 road win over Thomas County Central in its most recent game on Oct. 9.
Bremen, meanwhile, has won two consecutive games to improve to 4-2, and it is coming off a 21-20 road win over Darlington.
“It’s been a long time since we’ve been on the field, and I’m looking forward to (Friday), to have the opportunity to get to play,” said Callaway head coach Pete Wiggins. “The kids have worked so hard for a long time, and it’s been kind of a roller-coaster of a season with the virus. So, we’re just excited for the opportunity for the kids to get on the field against a really good football team in Bremen.”
Callaway went unbeaten in region play last season, and its closest game was against Bremen. Callaway needed a late-game interception to preserve the 20-14 win, and that was Bremen’s only region loss.
Bremen reached the second round of the state playoffs before losing 45-26 to eventual state-champion Dublin, while Callaway advanced to the semifinals for the second straight year before falling to Brooks County.
This year’s Bremen team, once again led by head coach Davis Russell, looks poised to do some special things as well, and Wiggins is expecting a hard-fought game.
“We felt like Bremen was one of the most physical games that we played last year,” Wiggins said. “They play really hard. They have a great scheme on offense, defense, and they’re really good on special teams. I think coach Russell does a great job. He’s got a great staff. So it’s going to be a really tough matchup at Callaway Stadium.”
The Cavaliers bring an unbeaten record into the game, and that’s no small feat considering the teams they’ve played.
Callaway opened with a 27-7 win over Troup before beating Hardaway 17-6, and it followed that up with a 35-0 drubbing of Douglass-Atlanta.
Callaway then traveled to the southern part of the state and earned a dramatic 16-14 win over Thomas County Central when Demetrius Coleman threw a 10-yard touchdown pass to Jalin Shephard with seven seconds remaining.
The road doesn’t figure to get any easier against the region opponents.
All five teams in the region have winning records, and Callaway and Haralson County are both unbeaten.
“I think our region is the toughest in the state of Georgia,” Wiggins said. “I think all the teams can beat the other one on a given night. We just have to go out and play our brand of ball, and hopefully some things will go our way and we can take advantage of momentum.”
As for Friday’s showdown, Wiggins said “it’s going to be a tough game. They’re physical, they’re really good. But it’s what it should be. We’re looking forward to it.”
CALLAWAY VS. BREMEN
WHEN: Friday, 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Callaway Stadium
RECORDS: Callaway (4-0); Bremen (4-0)