Tifton Gazette

Local Sports

October 3, 2007

Purple Hurricanes hope to avoid letdown

TIFTON — The Fitzgerald Purple Hurricanes are going from one extreme to the other.

Fitzgerald got a 13-6 win over the then-ranked sixth-ranked team in the state, Dodge County, last Friday at home. This Friday, Fitzgerald will be back at home, but the opponent will be the Albany High Indians, losers of 16 straight games dating back to Oct. 20, 2005.

Even though Dodge and Albany are two teams on completely different paths, the Albany contest is even more important for the third-ranked Hurricanes as it is a Region 1-AA tilt.

“Things have been going pretty good in practice this week,” said Fitzgerald head coach Robby Pruitt. “We haven’t had much time to celebrate that win over Dodge, because this is an important game for us.”

Even though Albany is 0-5 this year, Pruitt is still wary of the Indians.

“They still have got some athletes. We are not good enough to take anyone lightly,” said Pruitt.

In the win Friday over Dodge County, Fitzgerald got a huge game from Jemea Thomas. He scored both Fitzgerald touchdowns, recovered a key fumble, blocked an extra point and, “he was the big reason they missed that field goal in the first half,” said Pruitt.

“He played a whale of a game.”

Thomas has 282 yards rushing on 29 carries this year. Nick Williams has 195 yards on 35 carries, while Larry King has 190 yards on 34 carries.

Trenton Pruitt also has 181 yards on 27 carries.

Quarterback Brad Taylor has completed 23-of-49 passes for 317 yards. Pruitt has seven catches for 65 yards, while R.J. Davis had six catches for 119 yards and Thomas has 104 yards receiving on six carries.

The Hurricanes head coach also had praise for nose guard John Smith after the Dodge game. Smith helped the Fitzgerald defense shut down Dodge’s potent running game.

Game time Friday will be at 7:30 p.m. It is also homecoming for the Hurricanes.

“It has not affected us much,” Pruitt said of the festivities at the school.

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