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Showdown of Showdowns at BHS

Bearden’s Achilles heel has been Farragut. Farragut’s Achilles heel has been the Class 5A state quarterfinals.

Something has to give Friday night at BHS’s Bill Young Field in what could be the biggest Farragut versus Bearden sporting event in each school’s history.

It’s Bulldog-Admirals, Round 2 in 2007, in the TSSAA football playoff state quarterfinals, with a 7 p.m. opening kick-off Friday, Nov. 23.

Both teams are 11-1 and have been ranked among the state’s top 7 Class 5A teams since mid-season.

Some Bulldog players and fans see it as Round 9 in a recent history of BHS losses to the Admirals the Maroon and Gray is determined to change. On the biggest stage possible.

Bearden has lost eight in a row to FHS, including it’s only setback of 2007 — a thrilling 35-28 double-overtime loss at Bill Young Field.

However, Farragut senior cornerback Brandon Hylton said, “I look at next Friday as not playing a rivalry team, but playing the third round of the playoffs,” adding this is the third straight season Farragut has reached the state quarterfinals against a different opponent.

The previous two quarterfinal games, 2005 at Oak Ridge and last year at Ooltewah, were one-sided losses.

Bearden senior quarterback Dawson Halliday: “It will be a good game, but it’s just another playoff game. It’s just another team that stands in our way and I think we will have a good chance against Farragut.”

Admiral senior linebacker Micah Devan: “Of course it’s going to be a close game, it’s going to be a tough game. I think we can come out on top if we just play how we’ve been playing.”

Bearden senior wide receiver/defensive back Cory Eichholtz: “It’s a great opportunity because the state championship wouldn’t mean anything if we didn’t beat them. That’s our goal. That’s everybody’s goal at this point to get to Murfreesboro to get the ring. That’s a big game and we need to beat them.”

Farragut senior linebacker Ty Canan: “What better way to put them out, senior year, it would be awesome.”

Bearden head coach Brad Taylor said this quarterfinal match-up is “what these kids want. There is going to be plenty of hype so we’ve got to just stay focused.”

About Farragut standout senior runningback Andre Sterling, who is averaging more than 200 yards per games this season, Taylor said, “He is a heck of a running back and I think we are a better defense I think we just have to play smart football next week.”


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