N. Augusta, Thurmond go head-to-head in Game of the Week

Published: Sep. 22, 2023 at 11:25 PM EDT
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NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - For more reasons than just one, there’s been a lot of chirping going on between the North Augusta Yellowjackets and the Strom Thurmond Rebels in prep for Friday night.

It seems like it was just yesterday that we were kicking off Under the Lights, and since then, both teams have learned a lot about themselves.

Part of that comes from both squads facing tough non-region schedules.

Friday is one of those. Strom Thurmond is hoping to go for win number three in a row, while the Yellowjackets are looking to rebound after last week’s loss against Dutch Fork.

Last year, the Yellowjackets lost to the Rebels 13 to 7. The Rebels 13 coming only in the third quarter, while the Yellowjackets put on 7 in the fourth.

While the Yellowjackets are focusing on hushing the outside noise, the Rebels are dialing in on what they already have.

“We got to keep our team quiet, can’t have any personal files and other non-disciplinary issues. So just keep us if we do that straight, it can be really going through,” said Corey Tillman, North Augusta junior quarterback.

Andrew Webb, head coach for Strom Thurmond, said: “You can’t focus on just this week you can’t start looking ahead. You got to go get better today and if you can stack those good days on good days on good days, you got a chance to be special.”

While both teams are impressive in their own right, Tillman knows this game is going to be won based on how their offense manages the Rebels defense.

Tillman has been trying to keep his guys from entertaining the noise of social media surrounding this game.

He knows there’s a lot of hype surrounding this match-up. They’ve been working towards it since week one by dialing it in in the weight room, getting ready for what Tillman calls the ‘revenge game.’

The last time they played, it was a low-scoring affair- just 20 on the board between the two. It was a defensive battle.

This year, they’re prepared for it to be just the same.

“Their defenses are really good, give their cornerbacks a lot, a lot of talent, and a lot of great things they have they’re coming in, they have run a lot of men so take advantage of that,” said Tillman.

Darius Simpkins, senior defensive line for Strom Thurmond, said: “On Friday, when there’s a guy in front of you getting after it, we’ve already seen this all week. It’s nothing new to us, we are going to get after him, just like they’re getting after us.”

HD Yonce, senior lineman for Strom Thurmond, said: “It was very valuable for the defense like it felt kind of secure. But we’ve all the competition during practice. We’re always trying to get each other better. So, we’re not really paying attention to which side is really better. We’re always trying to beat each other.”

North Augusta won against Strom Thurmond 23 to 11.