At 3-0 on the season, Monroe rides into this week’s contest against Crisp County with something to prove. Last season, the Golden Tornado had an identical record when the faced the Cougars.
A tough 14-12 loss in a very physical contest took the wind out of the storm, and Monroe finished the season with only one more victory in the 2008 season. The 19 seniors on Charles Truitt’s roster will try to reverse that history Friday when they open their Region 1-AAA schedule in Cordele.
To date, Monroe has not been tested having out scored their opponents 106-3. That will not be the case against Crisp County. The Cougar defense is anchored by senior line backer Tommy Sanders (6’1” – 190) who has already committed to play for the University of Central Florida.
Crisp County is coming off a 10-6 win over Turner County, which gives them an overall season mark of 2-1, despite an anemic offense. The Cougars have scored only 45 points all season long, and rely on a stout defense, which has allowed only 27 points.
It is a classic showdown of a high-powered Tornado offense meeting up with a determined and talented defense.
The list of Monroe weapons is long. Domonique Lumpkin, Jawaski Randle, Larry Whitfield, Justin Pride and Domonique Reid have all contributed to the high octane attack and their play has Monroe looking like a contender for the 1-AAA crown.
The Tornadoes and Peach County are the only two 1-AAA teams which enter region play without a loss. Crisp County and Westover have each dropped a game while Dougherty, Cairo, Worth County and Perry have all dropped two.
The pecking order after three non region contests would appear to put Monroe right at the top, but Friday’s matchup with Crisp County is the first a tough three-game stretch. Next week the Tornadoes host the 2008 state-champion Cairo Syrupmakers, then a potent Peach County team comes to town.
Then on Oct. 10, the battle for Albany begins when Monroe squares off with Dougherty. If the Tornado can blow through the next few weeks, those games are looming large on the schedule.
Written By Mike Flynn