Game of the Week: Auburn High at Smiths Station
TIGERS LOOK TO SECURE A PLAYOFF BERTH WITH A WIN OVER THE PANTHERS
The Auburn High Tigers (4-2, 2-1) are one region win away from clinching a playoff spot.
‘We’re really good, we just have to fire on all cylinders which is why when we play to our full potential we can be really dangerous,” said Auburn High senior cornerback/wide receiver Omari Porter.
This Friday, they’ll meet up with the Smiths Station Panthers (2-4, 0-4).
“I like being the underdog,” said Smiths Station junior quarterback Corey Minton. “Ever since I was little I like coming from under you know getting the win, and I like playing in front of our home crowd.”
“Just to get a win would mean everything right now at this moment,” said Smiths Stations senior defensive tackle Christian Williams. “Beating Auburn is the number one priority out here.”
The Panthers have been plagued with injuries, especially on the offensive line. Smiths Station Head Coach Mike Glisson is happy to get one lineman back to help complete drives.
“The last two games we’ve had 300 yards offense,” said former Auburn High Defensive Coach/Line Coordinator Glisson (2006-2014). “It’s not just enough to get down there. When you get down there you have to find a way to finish the drive.”
Auburn High Head Coach Adam Winegarden knows the AHSAA 7A region 2 teams are all tough opponents.
“We feel like anybody in our region can beat anybody any given day, and every game is a playoff game,” said Winegarden. “We have to be ready to play.”
One Tiger ready for Friday is senior running back/linebacker Aaron Diggs. The Coastal Carolina safety commit brought home five touchdowns in Auburn High’s last matchup against Minor.
“O-line does a good job of selling it and I do a good job of selling it,” said Diggs. “It opens up for our wide receivers and our wide receivers can just take advantage of what they have.”
The Panthers linebackers are the leaders of their defense, and they’ll need the entire team to be ready for Diggs and Auburn Highs’ versatile offense.
“We’re going to make sure that if they make some mistakes we are going to capitalize,” said Williams. “They better watch out for everybody.”
Both defenses are prepared to shut down the spread offense, especially their mobile quarterbacks. Auburn High Stanford commit, Omari Porter, plans to keep an eye on Panthers’ Corey Minton.
“The quarterbacks a playmaker. He likes to run the ball,” said Porter. “He’s kind of dangerous with the ball.”
Minton sees the talent on his Panthers team, and he hopes to bring it for the game of the week in front of his home crowd.
“Just to prove that we still have that fight,” said Minton. “We still have that hunger.”
Auburn and Smiths Station kickoff this Friday in Panthers Stadium at 7 p.m. CT/8 p.m. EST.