The Irwin County Indians will spend part of their Thanksgiving on the practice field.
And that's just fine with them.
"I love practicing on Thanksgiving Day," head coach Buddy Nobles says. "I talked to some of the seniors, asking how many times they've practiced on Thanksgiving Day. Some of them have spent every year of Thanksgiving in high school practicing. What a blessing."
Thursday will be the fourth straight Thanksgiving the Indians have practiced for the next day's state quarterfinal game. This year, Irwin County faces Emanuel Co. Institute on the road.
The Indians are the 21st seed in Class A-Public, the lowest remaining seed in the tournament. ECI, on the other hand, is undefeated, and has blown out virtually every opponent they've faced this season.
The playoffs are business as usual for Nobles' bunch however. When the Indians reach beautiful Twin City Friday night, they won't be intimidated. Nobles says all that matters Friday will be surviving and advancing.
"Just score one more point," he says about the Indians' goal. "It's the NFL mentality now. Right now, I just want to win by a point. It doesn't matter what it is."
Irwin County faces ECI in a state quarterfinal game at 7:30 p.m. Friday night in Twin City. This is a rematch of the 2015 state semifinal that Irwin Co. won 19-15 to advance to a second straight state title game.
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