COVINGTON - After being eliminated from state playoff contention last week by Heritage, the Alcovy Tigers are looking to bounce back this Friday as they play host to Winder-Barrow for the final game of the 2007 football season.
With no playoff implications on the line for either team in Friday's Region 8-AAAA crossover game, both squads will try to salvage a win before going into the offseason.
"This is one of those games that is tough for them and it's tough for us because we both were trying to get the No. 4 seed (in the subregion) last week. We're in the same boat," Alcovy head coach Kirk Hoffmann said. "It's like I told the players, they're playing this game because they love the game of football."
Friday's game will be a rematch from earlier in the season as the teams met on Sept. 14 with Winder-Barrow beating the Tigers 23-7.
In that game, the Tigers were plagued by six fumbles and 12 penalties, something Hoffmann wants his team to avoid Friday night.
"We had a lot of turnovers and mistakes (in the last game against Winder-Barrow)," Hoffmann said. "Hopefully, we're going to take care of that but we're a better football team now and they are, too. It's going to be a good football game to watch."
Hoffmann stressed that some other keys to winning will be to win the battle upfront and to contain Winder-Barrow's passing attack.
"We're going to have to stop them up front," Hoffmann said. "Their senior offensive linemen are outstanding. They're also good at wide receiver and we're going to have to contain them. Offensively, we cannot afford the penalties."
Alcovy (2-7 overall, 1-4 in Region 8-AAAA South) was 2-2 in its first four games including its first victory in school history, a 23-0 victory over Newton. In the fourth week of the season, the Tigers won their first region game, a 20-6 win over Rockdale.
Alcovy has lost four straight games in a row, including last week's 28-24 loss to Heritage.
Winder-Barrow had four straight wins to start the season but has lost five straight games. The Bulldoggs' last win was Sept. 14 against Jackson County in its sub-region opener.
Last week, the Bulldoggs lost 27-6 to Madison County.
SideBar: Winder-Barrow at Alcovy
' When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.
' Where: Homer Sharp Stadium
' The series: Winder-Barrow leads the series 2-0; this week's game is a rematch from a game earlier this season when Winder-Barrow beat Alcovy 23-7.
' Last week: Alcovy lost 28-24 to Heritage; Winder-Barrow lost 27-6 to Madison County
' Records: Alcovy (2-7 overall, 1-4 in Region 8-AAAA South), Winder-Barrow (4-5 overall, 1-5 in Region 8-AAAA North)