Seminole County coach Alan Ingram, left, and Terrell County coach William Huff are longtime fishing buddies, but the two meet on the gridiron tonight when the Greenwave host the Herald No. 2 Indians in a crucial Region 1-A showdown. (Herald file photos)
DAWSON — Terrell County football coach William Huff and Seminole County’s Alan Ingram spend a lot of time during the offseason fishing together. They talk on the telephone about their next trip, the best bait to use and the best time of the day to be on the lake.
The two have even been talking about a trip to Central Florida next summer.
They spent time this summer on Lake Seminole. Both claim they didn’t talk much about football.
This week, however, neither one has spoken much to the other.
As powerful Seminole County travels to Dawson to meet an upstart Terrell County squad, the two put their friendship aside — at least for four quarters tonight. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
“We’re going to make a fisherman out of William Huff before it’s over,” Ingram said as his Indians prepare to meet Terrell. “I think the only conversation we’ve had this week is how many Cokes he needs to provide for us after the game.”
While the Herald No. 2 Indians, the fourth-ranked team in Class A and the No.1 team in the public school rankings, have held the upper-hand lately, tonight’s game is a chance for the Greenwave to see how much they’ve matured.
They rallied for a dramatic 8-0 victory last week against Calhoun County, scoring with less than a minute in the game.
“We came into the season with a lot of new faces and without any experience,” Huff said. “We’ve played five games so far, so it’s not new anymore. This game is a chance to find out a lot about our family. Anytime you play Seminole County, it’s going to be a physical game. We’re going to find out a lot about ourselves.”
The Greenwave (3-2, 1-0 Region 1-A) have won three straight after beginning the season 0-2. During that streak, Terrell has outscored Central-Talbotton, Schley County and Calhoun County by a combined 91-30. Two of its three victories have been shutouts.
However, Terrell believes its turning point came two weeks ago against Schley when the Greenwave trailed 30-6 at halftime. Huff changed some of his players who weren’t buying into his “family concept,” and the result was the Greenwave scoring 37 unanswered points en route to a 43-30 victory.
Terrell hasn’t allowed a point since the second quarter against Schley, a streak of six consecutive quarters. Huff knows that streak will be severely tested when Seminole comes to town.
“I’m looking forward to the challenge,” he said. “We’re excited about the challenge. Any time you play a good football team, you find out a lot about yourself.”
Seminole County (4-0) was off last week and plays its first region game tonight. The Indians’ last game was a 42-12 victory over then-Herald No. 3 Pelham, one that gained the Indians statewide recognition. In that victory, the Indians shut down a Pelham team that was averaging more than 300 yards rushing a game, holding them to less than 175 yards of total offense.
Ingram knows slowing down Terrell on offense will be key.
“Terrell always plays well at home,” Ingram said. “Our coaching staff and our kids know that. It’ll definitely be hostile there.”
After the game, the two coaches can resume their friendship. But they likely won’t be talking about the fish they let get away.