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Walnut Grove at Lanier preview

Lanier’s Tario Fuller

Lanier’s Tario Fuller

Walnut Grove Warriors (8-AAAA)

Coach: Ben Reaves

Record: 1-8, 0-6 region

Last week: Lost to Madison County 41-6

Lanier Longhorns (8-AAAA)

Coach: Billy Wells

Record: 7-2, 4-2 region

Last week: Beat Lumpkin County 41-7

With the Longhorns having not only wrapped up their first state playoff appearance, but also locked themselves into the region’s No. 3 seed, one might think Friday’s game might be looked at as kind of a tune-up game, particularly with the struggling Warriors coming to town.

But that’s not the way head coach Billy Wells says his team is looking at it.

“To be honest, we’re approaching it like any other game,” Wells said. “We’re focused more on (Friday). Once the game is over, we’ll talk about (the playoffs) a little more. We just want to give the kids a chance to be successful, and being Senior Night, it’s important for us to send our seniors out on a good note.”

The Longhorns have recovered nicely from a double-overtime loss to Chestatee three weeks ago with convincing wins over Stephens County and Lumpkin County.

Still, Wells is hoping to see a better whistle-to-whistle performance from his team heading into the postseason, and will look to stalwarts like 1,000-yard rusher Tario Fuller to lead the way.

“For us, it’s still about maturity and consistency,” Wells said. “We’re still looking to put a complete game together and have a little more consistency throughout the game.”

Last meeting: Lanier won 42-0 last year

Directions to Lanier High School: From I-85, go west on Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road and turn right onto Buford Highway. School is on the left.