The Wilkinson County Warriors will visit Buddy Bufford Field this Friday to take on our Red Devils in a game that will decide the Region 7-A title. The big game, with a 7:30 kickoff, will also go a long way toward deciding the seeding of both teams in the Class A Public School playoff bracket.
A win by the Red Devils will put Lincoln County in a prime position to secure the top spot in the playoffs, which includes home field advantage the first three rounds. A Warrior win will push the Devils down the top-16 list, potentially having to travel all rounds. Class A playoffs will begin November 23.
Fans are encouraged to be in their seats by 7:00 Friday night as the 1962 Red Devils will be honored on the 50th anniversary of their perfect season and Class C State Football Championship.
Wilkinson County is 6-2 with big wins over Aquinas and First Presbyterian Day the last two weeks. The Warriors returned their dangerous quarterback and several speedsters, and will be tough for the Devils to contain. They have not scored less than 34 points in a game this year, and have averaged 47 points scored against 7-A opponents. Their two losses came by a total of 11 points to Wilcox County and Irwin County; those two schools will battle for the 2-A crown this week.
Wilkinson County was the last school to hand the Devils a region loss: 26-14 on November 5, 2010, in Lincolnton.
The Red Devils had little trouble dispatching the Twiggs County Cobras last Friday in Jeffersonville. Lincoln County jumped to a 35-0 halftime lead enroute to a 49-0 finale.
Jamar Norman led the rushing attack with 119 yards on 8 carries with two touchdowns. Mike McIntire scored twice on 9 carries for 114 yards. Ben Turner completed 7 of 12 pass attempts for 115 yards and two touchdowns, all in the first half.
The Devil Defense controlled the Cobras for most of the night, limiting them to minus-21 yards on the ground. Twiggs' only meaningful offense in the game was a 39-yard pass to the LC 2 just before halftime, but the Devils successfully defended on the final play of the half to preserve the shutout.
After two Cobra punts, the Devils took over midway the first quarter. McIntire rushed for 12 and Turner scrambled for the same to setup a 2-yard scoring run by Jamar Norman. James Spratlin's PAT kick gave the Devils a 7-0 lead with 3:38 left in the opening period.
After the Devil Defense stopped the Cobras again, the Devils faced 3rd-&-1 when McIntire exploded for 43 yards to the endzone. The PAT boot was good with 49 seconds left in the first quarter.
On their next possession, the Devils fumbled the ball away, but the Cobras returned the favor on the very next play. Turner found Jalen Franklin for a touchdown, but the officials decided to earn their pay and penalized the Devils for offensive pass interference. McIntire gained nine before another penalty pushed the Devils back farther. A third penalty on the drive was not taken by the Cobras. Maybe they should have taken it, as Turner, facing 4th-&-18, again found Franklin, this time for 33 yards with no flags. The touchdown came with 7:19 left in the half. Spratlin's boot was good for a 21-0 advantage.
After another Cobra punt, Norman gained five before busting loose for 48 yards. Franklin then grabbed another TD pass from Turner, this time for 27 yards with 4:16 left before the break. The Devils led 28-0.
On the next LC possession, it was all Norman: 50-yard run plus 11 penalty yards, a 3-yard run, and another 2-yard TD run. With 1:15 before halftime, the Devils led comfortably 35-0.
The Cobras finally managed a first down on their final possession of the half. The first one came on a penalty, but then Twiggs County connected on a 39-yard pass to the 2 with a few seconds left. The next pass fell incomplete, preserving the shutout at the half.
The Devil offense continued its onslaught in the third quarter with McIntire scoring on a 28-yard run on a 3rd-&-3. The Devils led 42-0 with 9:10 left in the third period.
Sophomore Kendrick Beard took over the primary rushing duties. Late in the third quarter, Beard rushed for 12, 15, and finally 30 for the score. Spratlin kicked his 7th PAT of the night for what would be the final 49-0 margin.
The fourth period was played with a running clock, per GHSA's mercy rules.