OCILLA, GA (WALB) - There's two sides to rivalry between Fitzgerald and Irwin County.
For Irwin and Buddy Nobles it's a game they haven't won since 1999.
9 miles down the highway is Tucker Pruitt, the man who started the 17 year streak back when he first suited up in the purple and gold.
Now Pruitt is the head coach of the Purple Hurricane.
Fresh off a week one loss--he led his on the field Thursday morning for a walkthrough.
Pruitt's Freshman year was 2000 when the Canes started their 17 year streak of no losses and one tie.
Like many who have played in this fierce rivalry, he recalls the day the Canes turned the tables.
"When we got here it had been 5 years since Fitzgerald had won," said Pruitt. "And so it was a huge deal and I think now being 17 years their community is the same way. They want to beat Fitzgerald, they want it bad, and I think we want to beat Irwin as well."
The Indians hit the field at dawn as well.
Buddy Nobles' squad is fresh off a 31-0 shutout of Berrien.
They are the hosts of the annual rivalry this year--and like Pruitt alluded--they are hungry to end the drought.
If they do so maybe Nobles will change his personal nickname for the rivalry.
"They call it the border war. Me personally I call it lopsided," said Nobles. "There's a lot of people who say coach I played this game in 1962 and it still means a lot to those people and that's the thing that we tell our kids."
Fitzgerald has 43 all-time wins to Irwin county's 17.
Neither team can cling to history, they can only control this season's outcome.
Kickoff is Friday night at 8 under the lights in Ocilla.
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