The Auburn High football team will try to keep its state title hopes alive when they travel south Friday to face McGill-Toolen in the second round of the 7A AHSAA Playoffs.
The Tigers (8-3) put together a solid overall performance in the opening round, shutting out Murphy 33-0.
The Tigers played "somewhat" of a complete game, said Auburn High head coach Adam Winegarden.
"I didn’t think we played great on special teams Friday, he said, adding that he thought the team responded with solid second-half play. "Like I’ve said all year, I still think our best football is ahead of us. I don’t think we’re close to where we can be as a team. Each week we’re striving to play our best, and hopefully our best that week will give us a shot to keep playing."
Auburn High will now face undefeated McGill-Toolen, who the Tigers haven't faced since the 2017 playoffs. The Yellowjackets are coming off a 35-10 win over Enterprise in the first round.
"Obviously, we’ve got to go play a really good opponent and play at a high level to win. We’ve got to do it on a long road trip, so we’ve got to have a lot of focus this week on learning the game plan and then executing it on Friday," said Winegarden. "First of all, they’ve got really good players, and they’re extremely well-coached, so they’re undefeated for a reason because they’ve got a good football team and they’ve performed well all season. You get to this point in the year, there’s eight teams left, so every game is going to be a tough matchup."
The Tigers and Yellowjackets will clash at 7 p.m Friday.