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Surging divisional foes to clash Friday

By By Will Bardwell / staff writer
Oct. 15, 2003
Mike Brown may not have guessed a month ago that a matchup between his Philadelphia Tornadoes and the Clarkdale Bulldogs would feature two teams with undefeated division records.
The first-year head coach will not let himself be surprised by the development, though.
Both teams are 2-0 in Division 2-5A play after getting hot in recent weeks. The Tornadoes have won three straight, including a 7-6 win against Lake on Friday, and Clarkdale has picked up consecutive wins against Lake and Williams-Sullivan after starting 0-5.
If the Bulldogs are to continue their recent success, it will likely fall upon the shoulders of running back Cedric Burns. Burns has scored three touchdowns in Clarkdale's two wins, and Ethridge said he can expect to continue getting carries.
That possibility has Brown admittedly concerned.
Brown's own offense has also caused problems for opponents, although it has been the Tornadoes' defense that has stolen the show in recent weeks. During Philadelphia's three-game winning streak, opponents have averaged less than 12 points per game.
Against Lake, the Tornadoes got their only score of the game on defense when they recovered a fumble in the end zone.
Team speed or not, Ethridge said Philadelphia's size makes his preparations difficult.
The top four teams in Division 5-2A earn a playoff berth, and while Clarkdale and Philadelphia are both on the inside track to reaching the postseason, a win on Friday would bring a division championship one step closer.