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PREVIEW: Apalachee at Loganville

Apalachee's Eric Tanner

Apalachee's Eric Tanner

APALACHEE WILDCATS (8-AAAAA)

Coach: Shane Davis

Record: 1-4, 0-3

Last week: Lost to Flowery Branch 30-20

LOGANVILLE RED DEVILS (8-AAAAA)

Coach: Eric Godfree

Record: 1-4, 0-3

Last week: Did not play

Two teams with identical records, but identical rays of optimism, meet in the latest game of a series that has been hotly contested in its brief history — with three of the four games being decided by five points or less.

The Wildcats dropped their fourth straight game last week, but made some strides in the 30-20 setback by holding a high-scoring Flowery Branch team 12 points below the average of its previous three games.

Still, coach Shane Davis knows Apalachee is looking for tangible results.

“We’re past the point of moral victories,” Davis said. “Or maybe we’re not. I do think we played better and more inspired (against Flowery Branch last week).”

Apalachee will have to tighten up even more on defense this week to handle an improving Loganville running attack that got contributions from running backs Braxton Beck, Jonah Tompkins and Bernard Merriwather during a narrow 28-26 loss to Cedar Shoals in its last game two weeks ago.

“They’re just a physical football team,” Davis said of the Red Devils. “Their running backs run the ball well, and they’ve got a couple of good offensive linemen.

“We just have to tackle better. We’re still at the point where we’re just not tackling well. We’ve got people in position, but we cannot (continue) to allow so many yards after contact.”

The same can be said of Loganville, which will have to deal with an Apalachee running game that has gelled behind Eric Tanner and Zay Henry, who have combined for 965 yards and seven TDs this season.

Last meeting: Loganville won 45-42 last year

Directions to Loganville High School: From Hwy. 20, take a left onto U.S. 78. Take slight right onto Hwy. 81 and then another right on Clark McCullers Drive.