Tifton Gazette

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November 8, 2012

Devils finish at Brunswick

TIFTON — The Tift County Blue Devils have the opportunity to close out their season in style tonight when they make the long journey to the storied marshes of Glynn to take on the Brunswick Pirates.

Coach John Reid is faced with a bit of the unknown He is not just in his first year with the Devils; he is having to prepare for a totally new opponent. Not just for himself, but for the school. The Georgia High School Association evaluates attendance numbers every two years and for this most recent reclassification, added two teams to the very familiar band of opponents: Camden County and Brunswick.

Tift had at least played Camden once in their history, even if it had been five years previous in the state tournament. The Pirates, the younger of Glynn County’s two high schools, are completely new. And to add to it, the last time the Blue Devils saw the city of Brunswick was before the outbreak of World War II. Glynn Academy’s Red Terrors defeated them, 20-0, in Sept. 1941. They had been originally scheduled to go back recently, but instead of a home and away series with Glynn Academy, they bought them out, making both games home contests at Brodie Field.

The Pirates’ offense is led by quarterback Cory Dixon. Against Valdosta, he racked up 181 pass yards and 109 rushing, plus a touchdown.

“He’s an outstanding quarterback, one of the best we’ve seen” said Reid.

It will be a task and a half to stop just him, though Reid said he knew he and his team could not spend 100% of their efforts in that particular direction.

Brunswick has also had a rough year in Region 1-AAAAAA. Formerly a Class AAAA team, they have yet to win a region contest in their new territory and carry a five-game losing streak into tonight. They last won in their final non-region game, defeating Savannah’s Groves High, 62-12, on Sept. 20.

The Devils, whom Reid said would be starting Ryan Wedgeworth at quarterback, are dealing with their own losing skid in this rebuilding year. After starting off with two wins against one loss, they have dropped their last six, leaving them with a 2-7 record going into the finale.

While both schools are out of the playoffs race this year, a win for either side would provide some measure of momentum for next season. Reid said building the team back up would not be an overnight process, though.

“It’s going to take some time,” he said, but said he is seeing sparks of a bright future.

“We’ve laid the foundation,” he said. “There have been a lot of positives as far as discipline and work ethic.”

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