Bulldogs, Red Tops to meet with county bragging rights on the line
SLOCOMB, Ala. (WTVY) - Geneva County head coach Jim Bob Striplin compares it to the Iron Bowl.
“This really is our Auburn-Alabama game,” said Striplin.
For Slocomb head coach Richard Tisdale, he knows the importance of winning on Friday.
“I actually got a message this week that said congrats on the region now go beat Hartford,” said Tisdale.
This Friday night is the annual showdown between the Geneva County Bulldogs and the Slocomb Red Tops. These two programs meeting for the 83rd time.
Bragging rights will be on the line in this county rivalry.
“I know this is the 83rd time we’ve played them and I also know we have a 46-36 edge over these guys,” said Striplin.
“It’s just fun for the kids,” said Tisdale. “They grew up eight miles apart. They played against each other in rec sports. They see each other on the weekends. When they are 40-50 years old, they’re going to see each other at the gas station.”
This matchup will pit two of the top teams in the Wiregrass against one another. Geneva County at 7-2. Slocomb at 8-1.
“Number one, they are big and physical up front on both sides of the ball,” said Striplin. “Defensively, they run to the ball well which is really a trademark of any good team we’ve played this year and it’s the same with them.”
“They get in your face on defense. They put pressure on you,” said Tisdale. “They run a million formations all over the place and just a ton of team speed. We just want to corral that up a bit and slow them down.”
The storylines in this game almost write themselves.
Three star running backs will be in the spotlight. Geneva County’s Emmanuel Henderson and the Slocomb duo of Rashawn Miller and Jaylen Nobles. Both sides working on game plans this week to slow each other down.
“We’ve had to beef up our scout team this week knowing what kind of talent they have in the backfield to just simulate the best we can what they are going to do us Friday night,” said Striplin. “Nobles is a great running back. He’s a big, strong guy who can run. It’s going to take everything we can to bring him down.”
“Just a lot of prayer,” said Tisdale. “Just trying to corral him. It’s not going to take just one guy. Being in place on defense, making sure we are where we are supposed to be. Making sure we are gap sound and then doing that as a team. One on one, he’s probably going to make a pretty good play so making sure we are where we’re supposed to be and corral him up.”
The Red Tops will try to keep up their winning ways. Eight straight wins this season and five wins in the last six meetings with the Bulldogs.
Geneva County is hoping for a boost heading into the postseason.
“It’s going to take everyone playing as hard as they can,” said Striplin. “It’s going to take us making the right calls on the sideline coaching wise and player wise. We’re going to have to leave it all out there because we know that Slocomb will.”
“We just want to win,” said Tisdale. “That’s what we talk about every day. Win the drill. Win whatever we are doing that day. We want to win this Friday night. Doesn’t really matter what has happened before or after, this Friday night is all that matters right now.”
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