The Meigs County Tigers came very close to making it to the state title game last year. The Tigers are in position to get there this year. Friday night is a semifinal rematch from last year against Trousdale County.
But this year, the game is in Decatur.
Tears fell in Trousdale County 32-29 in 2018 and the Yellowjackets moved on to the state title game. From that moment, Meigs has poured its energy and effort into this year. Senior wide receiver Jon Jon Beeler put it quite simply, "I want to win. I want to get to that state." Senior quarterback and defensive back Aaron Swafford, who is the reigning Class 2A Mr. Football, added to Beeler's statement, "We've been so close the last few years. Kind of leaves a bad taste in your mouth."
Coach Jason Fitzgerald said the 2019 Tigers have been in the zone. "This team has been truly focused just once we got to the playoffs, one week at a time," Fitzgerald said.
Beeler is the Tigers best receiver and he's fully returned for duty. He suffered a foot injury in the first game that sidelined him for 12 weeks. He played with restrictions against South Greene two weeks ago.
Doctors cleared him to play 100 percent last week. Beeler said, "It feels great. That 12 weeks was the longest weeks of my life. I just wanted to be back here with my family and play some football again." His quarterback, and good friend, Swafford added, "Having him back out there is really vital to use him to pass the ball and when we face teams like Trousdale and getting to the state championship and stuff like that, we're going to need to be able to throw the ball and he's really just a big asset to have with our offense."
Trousdale is rich in tradition and has won many state championships. Meigs County is well aware. Swafford said his team can't start slow like last year, must stop the run and remain disciplined.
Coach Fitzgerald's message is simple and direct. "Go get it. Go get it. We're to that week. We're to the semifinals where we have a chance to go to the finals. We're not going to sit back and wait on something to happen or hope something happens. We gotta go get it. And that's what we're going to try to do on Friday night."