Northeast and Twiggs County are offering a different Saturday morning football opportunity for their fans.
Morning football and free admission.
The Friday night game between the Raiders and Cobras at Thompson Stadium was postponed for the evening because of constant lightning in the area. The teams will return to Thompson Stadium at 10 a.m. in hopes of finishing. Saturday morning’s kickoff forecast is for isolated thunderstorms and a 30 percent chance of precipitation.
Tattnall Square’s home game with Southwest Georgia suffered the same fate, but it will not be made up.
The first lightning strike at Thompson came at 8:11 p.m. with Twiggs County having just taken possession of the football on its 15. The Cobras ran one play before action was stopped with 9:35 left in the first half of a scoreless game.
Northeast had just finished an 11-play, 69-yard drive that stopped after the Raiders failed to convert a fourth-and-4 opportunity. The Raiders had 70 yards in 16 plays to 19 yards on 10 plays for the Cobras.
At least 30 minutes must pass after a lightning strike for play to resume. The lightning — strikes and flashes — continued throughout the evening. Game and school officials, including Bibb County athletics director Raynette Evans, made the decision at 9:20 p.m.
Evans said she couldn’t recall a regular-season football game involving a Bibb County program that was stopped for lightning, but she did remember one or two scrimmages in the past six years or so
At Tattnall, the game was cancelled after an hour-and-45-minute delay.
“It’s a non-game because we didn’t make it to halftime,” Tattnall Square head coach Barney Hester said. “According to the lightning detector and the interpretation of the head official, he felt like it was in the best interests of both teams not to go out in those conditions. It is something that we just can’t control, and obviously our first concern was to keep our players safe.”
Tattnall did show the ability to move the football and get stops on defense when it needed to. Southwest Georgia took the kickoff and kept the ball for 15 plays, but the Trojans’ defense did not allow the Warriors to get inside the 20. Meanwhile Tattnall, behind the running of Andrew Layson and Andrew Parker, who both scored touchdowns, looked strong offensively.
“We got enough on film to grade, so we do like that part of it,” Hester said. “I thought our defense did a great job keeping them out of the end zone. We talked about not giving up the big play, and we were able to do that. It is frustrating when you can’t finish a ballgame, but we have a big ballgame next Thursday against Westfield in Perry, so it’s time to start thinking about that one.”
— John Kosater contributed to this story