The Indians (5-4, 2-2) are not going to the playoffs and if Lumpkin County gets a win tonight on its home turf, the Warriors (6-3, 3-1) aren’t going to the post season either.
Lumpkin County fell out of contention for post-season play with its 24-22 loss to Chestatee last Friday night. However, the very idea that the Indians would even be in contention for the playoffs after a winless 2006 season seemed preposterous.
"I thought their (Chestatee’s) success on third down conversions and our inability to convert on third downs proved to be the real difference in the outcome of the game," said Lumpkin County coach Tommy Jones. "Regardless of the circumstances, the one constant this season has been the tremendous effort and attitude of our players. It has been outstanding."
If White County beats the Indians tonight, and Chestatee loses to North Hall, the Warriors will be the No. 4 seed coming out of Region 7-AAA thanks to their win over the War Eagles in Week 8.
The Indians are playing for pride and an above .500 record and the Warriors are playing for the post season which means this game should be one to remember.
"White County has a very good football team," said Jones. "They have been playing with a great deal of confidence since their big win over Chestatee a few weeks ago."
The truth of it is that the two teams seem to be, at least where the numbers are concerned, evenly matched.
The Indians come into the game averaging 22 points per game while giving up 24. The Warriors average 18 points per game and give up 20.
Cameron and Ken Jackson lead a lethal running game for Lumpkin County. Both young men average over 7 yards per carry and, between them, have accounted for 18 of the team’s 24 touchdowns.
Keying in on and stopping the two Jacksons, however, doesn’t guarantee a win.
Indians junior quarterback Daniel Abercrombie and sophomore running back Haden Rider have 660 yards between them and four touchdowns.
As potent as Lumpkin County’s offense can be, the Warriors defense can match and exceed it.
White County has, through nine weeks, 30 turnovers 18 of which are interceptions. The defense is led by Brandon Vaught with 78 tackles and five interceptions; Tyler Hamilton with 72 tackles, 10 for a loss; and Tasi Suaava with six sacks.
"They (White County) combine some very athletic skilled people with some big and strong lineman," said Jones. "We have a big challenge ahead this Friday night (tonight)."
White County won last year’s game against Lumpkin County 13-10.