November 25, 2003
Thomasville-- It would be very easy for Thomas County Central head coach Ed Pilcher to buy into the hype.
Friday's second round playoff game with Thomson is a rematch of last year's Quad-A title game, a game his Yellow Jackets lost by 15 points. But rather than talking about revenge this week, Pilcher is taking a different approach.
"It's not a revenge thing, it's just that this is a new season. You know, last year they had a great year, they beat us in the championship game they deserved to win, they were better than us, they played well. This year is a different year," Pilcher said.
And while it may be a different year for both teams, the site of Friday's game is the same. The Jackets travel to "The Brickyard" in Thomson where the Bulldogs haven't lost a game in three years.
"Rude, a bunch of rude fans. It's hard to play in there because the fans are like right on the field and right on top of you," quarterback Erik Walden said.
"I think if you let it it can be intimidating when their folks are all around hollering and screaming," Pilcher added.
But unlike last year, the Jackets now know what it's like to play in front of the hostile Thomson fans and they plan on using that to their advantage.
"We know what it's going to be like and I think that helps us some going back there. So we won't be strangers to it anyway," Pilcher said.
And although they fell short of winning a region championship, the Yellow Jackets ultimate goal is still very much in tact. A state championship.
"That's all I really want is a big ring on my finger. A region title doesn't really matter, that's just a patch on your jacket, but I want a ring though," Walden said.
And even though coach Pilcher may not admit it, a win Friday over the Bulldogs would be a nice touch along the way to attaining that ring.
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