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PREVIEW: Flowery Branch at Apalachee

Apalachee's Rakim Peters

Apalachee's Rakim Peters

FLOWERY BRANCH FALCONS (8-AAAAA)

Coach: Chris Griffin

Record: 3-2, 3-0 region

Last week: Beat Salem 35-18

APALACHEE WILDCATS (8-AAAAA)

Coach: Shane Davis

Record: 1-3, 0-2 region

Last week: Lost to Clarke Central 35-12

Having already faced powerhouses in their first two region games, the road doesn’t get any easier for the Wildcats when Flowery Branch comes to town Friday night.

And the game plan remains the same — try to use a running game led by Eric Tanner and Zay Henry to control the clock and keep the ball away from the opposition as much as possible, giving the defense maximum opportunity to cut down on big plays.

While the plan sounds simple enough, the Wildcats haven’t had much success executing it, having given up 97 points over its first two region games against Gainesville and Clarke Central.

And the task doesn’t get any easier against the Falcons team lead by QB Jackson McDonald, who has rolled up 991 yards of total offense and accounted for 15 touchdowns either on the ground or through the air.

“We’ve just got to tackle better,” Apalachee coach Shane Davis said. “Those teams are already good, so when we get a chance to make a tackle, you can’t give them 10 or 15 extra yards.”

The Wildcats will look to leaders like defensive end Rakim Peters (team-best 37 tackles, 1 INT, 1 sack) to show the way in slowing down the Falcons’ multi-faceted attack.

Last meeting: Flowery Branch won 42-20 last year

Directions to Apalachee High School: From Ga. Highway 316 east, turn right on Patrick Mill Rd. Take first left. Go to 4-way stop and turn left onto Haymon Morris Rd. School is on the right.