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Troup looks for air raid vs. St. Pius X

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

ATLANTA — It will be a major contrast in styles here Friday evening in metro Atlanta when the GHSA 4A No. 7-ranked Troup Tigers (9-2) take on the region champion St. Pius X Lions in GHSA second-round playoff action.

Friday’s Tigers-Lions game will pit a high-octane passing game by Troup against a Lions team which favors a strong rushing attack. A Troup aerial assault force vs. a Panzer division ground game in St. Pius X should be an interesting matchup to see which team can force the other to play its style.

The undercard in the contrasting styles of offense is the underrated Troup defense, which played one of its best games of the season last week in a decisive 31-7 win over Heritage-Catoosa on the road in Ringgold. The Tigers defense played a terrific game, dominating a high-powered Heritage Generals offense. It’s lone score was the result of a Troup fumble.

The best attribute for Troup is its athleticism and overall team speed. With a wealth of talented receivers, the Tigers can turn a simple bubble screen into a long scoring play with tremendous athletic ability. The top four receivers include Jamari Thrash, Kobe Hudson, Anthony Mark-Dixon and Kenly Bridwell.

On defense, Troup can run out several standout players including King Mwikuta, Joco Willis and Macenta Stafford just to name a few. “We’re excited to still be playing and I’m very proud of our guys and the foundation that has been paid by our guys through their hard work,” said third-year Troup coach Tanner Glisson.

After 1-9 season in 2015, Troup is now 17-5 the last two years.

“St. Pius X is going to be an extremely difficult opponent, they have a tremendous coaching staff and a ton of tradition,” noted Glisson. “We’ve only been to the quarterfinals three times in school history and they’ve been there six times in the past 10 seasons.”