Leroy Ryals wasn’t thrilled with what he saw last week, even if it was expected.
With Thomasville High enjoying an open week, Ryals got the chance to see a dangerous Fitzgerald team, one that will visit Veterans Memorial Stadium at 8 p.m. Friday with second place in Region 1-AA and a home playoff game on the line. Despite a 18-7 loss to host Early County, Ryals came away impressed with the Purple Hurricanes.
“I know if you look at the Early County score, I was at the game and the score isn’t indicative of how they can play,” he said. “I thought Early came out and played inspired ball.
“Long travel and that whole deal. I just hope they have one more bad night in them. Because they went to Early last week and now they have to come to us, and that’s not a short trip either, even to Thomasville.”
Fitzgerald, which is third in the region at 5-3-1 and 3-2, didn’t score an offensive touchdown against the Bobcats. Playing without senior quarterback Romarius Gaulden, who was injured late in the Hurricanes’ win against Berrien on Oct. 18, Fitzgerald played a freshman behind center. Growing pains were experienced as Early scored a late defensive touchdown to seal the win.
Still, Ryals sees the talent that allowed Fitzgerald to rush for 338 yards against region champion Brooks County, as well as having the propensity to hitting big plays in the passing game.
See Wednesday's edition for more details