THOMASVILLE — The Brookwood Warriors and Trinity Christian Crusaders have postseason history.
The two have met seven times since 1982, with five of those matchups occurring in the playoffs.
They’ll make it a sixth time Friday when Trinity Christian (5-5, 2-2 GISA 2-AAA) comes to town to for a 7:30 p.m. first-round kickoff against the Warriors (10-1, 5-1 GISA 3-AAA).
The teams have met three times in recent history, all three of which were semifinal or quarterfinal games. Trinity Christian won 17-14 in the 2003 quarterfinal and 19-17 in the 2006 semifinal.
Then in 2007, en route to its championship, Brookwood took the Crusaders out in the semifinal with a 41-20 win.
This season, the Crusaders are big up front, Brookwood coach Shane Boggs said, with really good defensive tackles who also play on the offensive line. They also have some good skill guys who could hurt the Warrior defense if they can get through it.
Boggs said he expects their game plan to be hogging the ball and playing slow. For Brookwood’s defense, it’s a game of forcing them backward and winning a turnover battle.
“Defensively, we’re playing for the negative play,” Boggs said. “We really want to get a second-and-12, that’s how we’ll get them off the field.”
With the Warrior offense back on the field, it’s all about getting started early. Boggs said he doesn’t want a 7-7 score on the board when the teams go in for halftime, as happened in the game against Tiftarea.
“If we can get out in front and stay out in front, I think, quite honestly, it’ll force them to go away from what their game plan would be,” Boggs said.
Their game plan defensively might be a work in progress as the game goes along. Boggs said spread offenses are rare in the Crusaders region, with one one of the five teams running it.
“It’s an interesting matchup when we’re on the field,” Boggs said. “They haven’t seen a whole lot of shotgun. I’m hoping this is an advantage we have. From a repetition standpoint, this is new to them.”
The Crusader defense is allowing 26.6 points per game, a number far lower than Brookwood’s average offensive output of 34.9. And while Trinity Christian has only averaged 24 points on offense, the Brookwood D is keeping it to a small 16. Take out the 62 given up to Valwood and it’s only 11.4.