It#039;s No. 4 vs. No. 5 as Eagles take on Rebels

Published 12:00 am Thursday, October 26, 2006

It's a case of the student becoming the master.

Fort Dale head coach James &#8220Speed” Sampley played high school football under Lowndes Academy head coach Art Sullivan, coached with Sullivan at Lowndes, even winning a State Championship in 1997, and will face off against his old mentor Thursday night as the No. 4 Eagles square off against the unbeaten, No. 5 Rebels.

The Eagles will play a rare Thursday night game in this final week of the regular season after the AISA asked that teams try to play a Thursday night game, if possible, because of officiating scheduling problems.

Sampley said he and Sullivan agreed on the change weeks ago and having an extra practice day going into the playoffs could be advantageous for his team.

&#8220This time of year you would like to have some momentum and to be healthy, so it may be advantageous for us,” Sampley said.

Momentum is something the Eagles didn't have last season going into the playoffs, as they dropped the last two regular season games to Patrician and Edgewood.

The Eagles will need a huge effort to continue their momentum, as Sampley said the Rebels are quick and fast.

&#8220On offense, they run the outside veer so you have to cover three men every play,” Sampley said. &#8220That's an added dimension that we normally don't see.”

Health wise, the Eagles' Blake Conway pulled a groin and Cory Johnson suffered a pinch nerve last week, but both should be ready for Thursday's game.

Kickoff for Thursday's game at Fort Dale is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

The Eagles face off against Macon-East next week in the first round of the playoffs.