FORT PAYNE, Ala. (WHNT) — The high school football regular season is in the books! Now the road to bringing a blue map home really begins as our local teams who earned a spot in the playoffs fight their way through the postseason.
Welcome to Wildcat Stadium, the site of our final Jack’s Game of the Week this season: Decatur vs. Fort Payne.
Both teams enter this one finishing the regular season 8-2 overall.
These teams shared five common regular season opponents with Decatur going 5-0 against that group. Fort Payne went 4-1 — suffering a loss to Athens two weeks ago.
“We feel good! To get here is important, now you want to stay here,” said Decatur Head Football Coach Jere Adcock. “It’s a one-week season, so that’s been our focus. We want to be 1-0 in the playoffs right now after this one.”
This marks the first meeting between these programs since 1948 — and just the second overall. Decatur got the win last time against what was then known as DeKalb County High School.
“They understand the reality of the situation. They understand this is a time of year that you’ve got to be at your best or you’re not playing anymore,” said Chris Elmore, head coach for Fort Payne. “So I think we’ve had a good week and we’re tired and beat up and banged up like a lot of people are, but we also had a positive week trying to improve and trying to get better, and go out there tonight [and] try to play the best we can.”
“We understand that is playoff football, whoever plays the best is going to win and move on,” Elmore continued. “Whoever doesn’t, unfortunately, their season ends so we’re just going to try to play the best we can tonight.”
Regular season records and meetings in the past are fun to talk about, but realistically they don’t matter. Once we reach this point of the season everyone is 0-0 all over again. It’s win and advance, lose or go home — no room for error. Both of these teams are well aware of that as they get set for a tough first game of the postseason.
Decatur ultimately defeated Fort Payne, 31-8, on Friday night and will advance to the second round of high school playoffs.