Syrupmakers making first trip to the “Valley”

The Cairo Syrupmakers (3-2, 2-0) prepare to take on the undefeated Peach County Trojans (5-0, 2-0) this Friday night in Ft. Valley. The big game is shaping up as the big step in deciding the region 1-AAA championship.
The Syrupmakers defeated the Trojans in Cairo last year 16-7, but the Trojans return 19 of 22 starters from last year’s 8-3 team. “They are a lot like we were last year, they have a lot of folks coming back with experience,” said Cairo coach Tom Fallaw.
The Makers have posted wins over Thomasville, Monroe and Worth County, while the Trojans have beaten Macon County, Rutland, Baldwin, Perry and Monroe. Peach County won the state title in 2005 and 2006 and have 10 region championships under their belt.
The Syrupmakers face their biggest challenge of the season on the road. Cairo hasn’t lost a game on the road since 2006 –  a 14-6 loss to Washington County in the second round of the playoffs. To continue that streak, the Syrupmakers will have to stop a talented Trojan offense that returns Lamar Zanders, who is now at wideout. Zanders played quarterback against the Makers last year due to an injury to starting quarterback Patrick Taylor, who is back this year. The Trojans also have an experienced offensive line returning. Peach lost some defensive players to graduation last season, but still return several college prospects, a solid defensive line and skill players in the secondary.
Both teams have given up an average of 9.2 points a game, but the Trojans are averaging 32 points a game offensively, while the Makers are scoring just over 13 points a game.
“It will be a great challenge for us. We’ve just got to keep improving and get better each game,” said Fallaw.
Friday night’s game in Ft. Valley is scheduled for an 8 p.m. kickoff. You can hear the game live on WGRA-radio or on the Internet at gaprep.com. Post game wrap-up can be found at our website, www.cairomessenger.com

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