Class 2A Preview: Fitzgerald vs. Thomasville
Class 2A Championship
When: Friday, Noon
No. 4 Fitzgerald Purple Hurricane
Record/Region finish: 12-2, Region 1 runner-up
Coach: Tucket Pruitt
How they got there: d. Dodge County 15-6, d. Fannin County 28-14, d. Putnam County 21-7, d. Swainsboro 27-0.
Top players: RB/SS DeNorris Goodwin, LB E.J. Lightsey, RB Jakorrian Paulk, QB Sultan Cooper.
Worth noting: Fitzgerald is almost exclusively a ground team that runs the wing-T. The Purple Hurricane threw only two passes last week, but ran for 292 yards. The top threat is A-back Goodwin, who has speed to go the distance. The defense is anchored by Lightsey, a three-star who has committed to Florida. … Fitzgerald reached the state final last year and came up short against Callaway 22-17 in the title game. The Canes haven't won a state championship since 1948.
No. 2 Thomasville Bulldogs
Record/Region finish: 13-1, Region 1 champion
Coach: Zach Grage
How they got there: d. Washington County 42-7, d. Heard County 42-16, d. Rabun County 49-24, d. Callaway 31-6.
Top players: QB Shannen White, RB Malik Harper, LB Ty Anderson, WR Jordan Williams, RB Ricky Fulton, FS Evan Wynn, DB Jimmy Bowdry.
Worth noting: The Bulldogs bring a balanced attack. White has thrown for 1,885 yards and 23 touchdowns. The tailback duo Harper (1,208 yards, 22 TDs) and Fulton (921 yards, six TDs) has been hard to stop all season. A deep corps of receivers is led by Williams (18 catches, 554 yards, six TDs) and Jay Cody (20 catches, 326 yards, four TDs). Anderson, who has number DI offers, is the leading tackler with 170 and has 15 sacks, and Wynn has 109 tackles and four interceptions. ... Thomasville won its last state championship in 1988. and is in the final for the first time since 1993.
Series: One of the oldest series in Georgia, this one began in 1922. Thomasville won the regular-season meeting 15-8 and went on to take the region.