Bearcats will travel to Rome for the second round of the playoffs

Published 3:56 pm Wednesday, November 16, 2016

By Powell Cobb

Managing Editor

Bainbridge is on the road for the second round of the State Class AAAAA Playoffs, taking a long trip to Rome for a matchup against the Wolves (9-2).

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After a 50-12 romp over Whitewater last Friday at Centennial Field, the Bearcats are looking to carry any and all momentum from Southwest Georgia with them up north.

The distractions of a 270-mile road trip certainly are a concern for coach Jeff Littleton and his Bearcat team, so extra focus, preparation and attention to detail are what’s going into this week’s practice.

“We got to be disciplined and execute the game plan,” Littleton said. “We’ve got to do a lot of things right.”

Last Friday, the No. 1 seed Wolves defeated Miller Grove 56-0 in Rome

Rome’s sophomore quarterback Knox Kadum has put up impressive numbers this season, com-pleting 88 of 138 passes for 1,266 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Jordan Watkins is the Wolves’ leading receiver with 30 receptions for 526 yards and three touchdowns, followed by Tyrish Martin with 28 receptions for 348 yards and three touchdowns.

The Wolves’ passing game is only half their attack. Littleton noted Rome’s balanced offense, and it shows in Kadum’s arm and receiver corp. But the two-headed giant of running backs Jalynn Sikes and Jamious Griffin adds another dimension that the Bainbridge offense will be forced to find an answer to.

“They are a little more run heavy,” Littleton said. “We have our work cut out for us. We have got to get 11 gold hats to the football.”

Stopping the rush was no problem for the Bearcats against Whitewater. Bainbridge held the Wildcats to just 31 rushing yards, but gave up 130 passing yards.

“Defensively they are solid,” Littleton said about the Wolves. “They run a similar type defense as we do, the four-man front.”

Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. in Rome.

The winner of the Bainbridge-Rome game will play the winner of the Loganville-Ware County game on Friday, Nov. 25.