On paper, Brunswick is a No. 3 seed in the state football playoffs. But top-ranked Lee County is expecting a region championship-type test Friday night for a second-round game in Leesburg.
Brunswick (8-3) ended up in a three-way tie for first place in Region 2-AAAAAA with Glynn Academy and Richmond Hill, but dropped to third on a tiebreaker. That region showed its strength in the first round as all three teams won their state playoff openers.
The Pirates had no trouble in their opener, routing Alcovy 41-6 behind 100-yard rushers Ree Simmons and Chuckobe Hill. Quarterback K.J. Lee threw for 151 yards and is near the 2,000-yard mark on the season.
Brunswick has won seven of its last eight games, including a 24-21 win over region champion Glynn Academy. Only a 42-27 loss at Richmond Hill kept it from the region title.
Not much has slowed Lee County (9-1) down since its only loss at Lowndes on Sept. 25.
The Trojans have won seven in a row, a stretch that includes noteworthy victories over Warner Robins, Tift County, Houston County, Northside-Warner Robins and Valdosta. The latest was last week in the first round of the state playoffs when they rolled to a 49-17 win over traditional Atlanta area power Tucker.
Lee blew the game open with a 41-point second quarter that resulted in a running clock. Caleb McDowell was the star with five first-half touchdowns, four on the ground and one on a punt return. Chauncey Magwood also rushed for 100 yards and threw a TD pass for an offense that had 360 first-half yards, 284 of those rushing.
A victory Friday would give Lee double-figure wins for the fourth straight season under head coach Dean Fabrizio. The winner of the matchup faces the winner of Rome and River Ridge in the AAAAAA quarterfinals.