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Salem at Winder-Barrow preview

Winder-Barrow’s Colin Shannon

Winder-Barrow’s Colin Shannon

Salem Seminoles (8-AAAAA)

Coach: John Starr

Record: 1-2, 0-1 region

Last week: Lost to Heritage 17-12

Winder-Barrow Bulldoggs (8-AAAAA)

Coach: David Wagner

Record: 1-2, 0-1 region

Last week: Lost to Gainesville 68-0

After being overwhelmed by state-ranked opponents the past two weeks, the Bulldoggs face a much more manageable task this week against a Salem team coming off an emotional loss to Rockdale County-rival Heritage.

The Seminoles to possess weapons like quarterback Licash Lackey and running back Tryiano Green.

But after last week’s loss to Gainesville, Winder-Barrow coach David Wagner says his team’s focus is more inward than on its opponent.

“We’ve got to take care of us,” Wagner said. “If we can do that, I think we should be OK. … We’ve got to play sound defense and don’t turn the ball over on offense.

“I feel like you get better when you play the kind of competition we have (the last two weeks). We didn’t back down. We played hard and we actually played well at times. I think having those games early help us.”

The Bulldoggs will be without a couple of key players like running back/defensive back CeCe Green and safety Ryan Evans due to injury Friday, which means some key reserves must fill the voids.

Executing some of the little things — such as special teams, which are led by veteran Colin Shannon — may also be a big key for Winder-Barrow in what figures to be a competitive game to the end.

Last meeting: Salem won 22-20 last year

Directions to Winder-Barrow High School: From Ga. Highway 316 east, go left on Highway 81 into Winder, turn left at third light onto Candler Street and stadium is about one-tenth mile on the right.