By Tom Law
The Toccoa Record
Enough about sanitizing and social distancing.
It’s time to tee it up and kick it off.
The Stephens County Indians will open the 2020 season Friday at White County beginning at 7:30 p.m.
The Indians will face a Warrior team that is returning most of its personnel from a 2019 season that saw White County average 28 points per contest while posting a 5-5 record.
Leading the way for the Warriors is a trio of players who were named to the all Region 7-AAAA team last year. They are quarterback J. Ben Haynes, receiver Cooper Turner and lineman Devin Sullens.
Haynes threw for 2,149 yards and 13 touchdowns last season. He also rushed for more than 900 yards meaning his total offense was 3,447 yards, second only in the state to Rabun’s Gunner Stockton.
Haynes has been named pre-season all-state.
Turner is Haynes’ favorite target as the Warrior receiver hauled in 61 passes and scored six touchdowns last season.
Sullens is a third-year starter on the offensive line.
On defense, the Warriors will unveil a new look, but there will be some experienced players returning including leading tackler Zion McCullen who played linebacker. He had 72 stops last season.
The Warriors have two returning starters in the secondary in Darius Cannon and Silas Mulligan.
Mulligan was third on the team in tackles last season with 68. Cannon intercepted two passes and recorded 51 tackles.
White County is considered one of the contenders for the Region 7-AAA title as they have 19 seniors on the team and have numerous returning starters from the squad that played in AAAA the past two seasons.