Gamecocks get set for playoff atmosphere in Samson - The Southeast Sun: Sports

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Gamecocks get set for playoff atmosphere in Samson

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Posted: Wednesday, October 31, 2018 11:08 am | Updated: 11:11 am, Wed Oct 31, 2018.

The New Brockton Gamecocks (5-4, 4-2) are still uncertain about their playoff destination this week, but the playoff picture will become much clearer after a Friday night tussle with the Samson Tigers (4-5, 3-3) on the road, however.

Currently New Brockton is sitting in a three-way tie with Samson and Goshen for the final two playoff spots for Class 2A, Region 3.

With a win over Samson, the Gamecocks are in and will be the No. 3 seed in the playoffs, but if the Gamecocks lose it makes things much more difficult.

If Samson beats New Brockton then that means all three teams will finish with a 4-3 region record and in that case it will mean that all three teams have split games against each other. So, the tiebreaker would come down to non-region opponent records.

The team with wins over non-region opponents with the most wins would earn the tiebreaker. New Brockton and Samson each have one non-region win, while Goshen has no wins against non-region opponents yet.

Right now, New Brockton holds that tiebreaker with its only non-region win coming against Cottonwood (four wins). Samson’s only non-region win came against Kinston (two wins).

However, Goshen plays Brantley (six wins) this week and if they win that game they will earn the tiebreaker in this scenario and get the No. 3 seed, while New Brockton would be eliminated from consideration because of Samson winning the head-to-head matchup.

New Brockton coach Justin Jones doesn’t want to think about those other possibilities; he wants his team simply to win.

“It’s a huge game for us,” Jones emphasized. “This is a playoff type of game and we’re going to treat it like it’s a playoff game.

“Going into Samson is always a good environment to play in, so we need for our guys to have a really good week of preparation to make sure we have a great performance on Friday night.”

This game is actually a makeup game after the original date, Oct. 12, was pushed back due to Hurricane Michael.

The Gamecocks are coming off a demolition of Zion Chapel last week, while Samson fell to Luverne.

“Their quarterback is a good football player and they are very sound on defense,” Jones said of Samson. “They want to run the football and they’re similar to what Coach (Jason) Wambles did when he was at Kinston.

“They are a really solid football team and we have to be clicking on all cylinders to make sure we have the type of performance we need to have on Friday night.”

Freshman quarterback Kaden Cupp started out the season with just one touchdown and five interceptions in the first three games of the season, but since that time he has settled in and thrown for 13 touchdowns and just three interceptions in the last six games.

For the season, Cupp has 1,416 yards and 18 total touchdowns. His favorite targets have been sophomore Colton Marsh and senior Bryce Baker.

Marsh has caught 28 passes for 531 yards and four touchdowns, while Baker has caught 17 passes for 258 yards and three touchdowns despite missing the first three games with a knee injury.

Against a tough Samson defense, though, senior running back Drew Simon will be huge for the Gamecocks. Simon has totaled 738 yards and 11 touchdowns thus far this season with three 100-yard games so far.

The Gamecock defense, which has battled a number of injuries this year, is led by defensive backs Cam Davis and Hunter Wallace.

Davis has recorded 32 tackles, three tackles-for-loss, one interception, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and three blocked kicks.

Wallace leads the Gamecocks with 46 total tackles, one tackle-for-loss, one fumble recovery and a touchdown.

The Gamecocks will travel to Samson on Friday with a 7 p.m. kickoff.

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