- The Winnersville Classic game will take place on October 6th.
- The Valdosta Wildcats came back from a Winnersville losing streak last year, scoring their first win in three seasons.
- Lowndes Vikings aim to make a comeback from their first losing season since 1994.
The game may not be for another week, but the hype is just getting started. I'm Malia Thomas, your neighborhood reporter in Valdosta, and I'm here at Hyder-Bazemore Stadium which will be host to the Winnersville classic game
"Ball is life"
The school spirit has already taken over Valdosta senior Jay Ball. He tells me that the anticipation for next Friday's game is all he is focused on.
"Man, I been a diehard Wildcats fan since I was born. I went to every game when I was born. My parents became Wildcats fans because of me cause I like them so much."
The Wildcats vs. Vikings Winnersville Classic game has a long storied history in Valdosta. Since the introduction of the classic in the early 80s, Valdosta holds the 25-20 advantage in their 45 run-in with Lowndes.
While Lowndes shut out Valdosta in the previous three seasons before 2022, last year the tide turned back in Valdosta's favor with them winning their last match up. With Lowndes coming from their first losing season since 1994, the pressure is on.
That's why Paris Jackson, junior at Lowndes High School, is helping his football team through his work as an athletic trainer.
"If there are any injuries, I usually be the one to treat them for like, turn burn or any injuries like that."
With Valdosta hosting the game on their home turf this year, they have the home court advantage, something Jay tells me will be key in their victory.
"I can speak for our seniors. This is our last year, and we wanna win bad. So we're hyping up the players."
Despite the rivalry, both Lowndes and Valdosta are keeping it friendly.
"It's just a fun place to be."
Tickets are on sale at the Wildcat ticket office this week. I'm Malia Thomas, your neighboirhood reporter in Valdosta, ABC27.