By Doug Gorman
If prizes were given to the team facing the longest bus ride to open the Georgia High School Association state playoffs, the Mt. Zion Bulldogs would no doubt win.
The Bulldogs face more than a five-hour drive to the Georgia coast for tonight's first-round playoff clash against No.-1 ranked Camden County.
Fortunately, Mt. Zion won't have to worry too much about getting a case of "bus-lag."
The Bulldogs are breaking the trip up over a two-day period.
Mt. Zion began its playoff adventure Thursday night, driving as far as Statesboro before checking into a hotel.
"We are going to have a brief walk through after checking out of the hotel Friday morning," said head coach Jackie Green. "It will be something kind of light."
Mt. Zion is returning to the playoffs after a two-year absence and face a monumental task when it returns to Kingsland for the second time in school history.
In 2000, Mt. Zion played Camden County in a playoff contest, winning the game against the Wildcats.
This year, Camden County comes into the contest as the No. 1 ranked team in the latest Class AAAAA football poll.
The Wildcats achieved their lofty ranking through tough defense, shutting out seven opponents and only allowing 16 points.
Mt. Zion made it into the playoffs as the No. 4 seed out of Region 2-AAAAA with a 6-4 record.
The Bulldogs ended their regular season two weeks ago, and had to get some help before making its playoff reservations to play the state's No. 1 team.
When Northside Warner Robins beat Warner Robins last week, Mt. Zion was in as the No. 4 seed out of Region 2-AAAAA.