Camden Ready for an Adventure; the Unbeaten Wildcats Shrug off the Coin Flip That Put Them on Road

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Byline: DON COBLE

KINGSLAND, Ga. - Friday night's Class AAAAA semifinal showdown between undefeated Camden County and Newnan already started with an unlucky bounce for Camden. That's when Camden coach Jeff Herron went against his gut feeling and called heads in a coin flip for home-field advantage.

If the quarter had bounced the other way, Newnan would have to make the six-hour bus ride to South Georgia. If the Wildcats are to win the state championship, they will have to prove they travel well.

For a high school football coach, long trips usually create many challenges. Herron has to organize a fleet of buses and hotel rooms, all while trying to keep teenage boys focused on football.

For the players, however, the trip to Newnan will be as much an adventure as a state semifinal game.

"We like it," quarterback Christian Milstead said. "We have fun. It won't be a distraction for us."

While the trip seems like a distinct advantage for Newnan, Camden already has proven it can handle the rigors of travel. The Wildcats traveled to Hoover, Ala., on Sept. 12 and came away with a 44-16 victory.

Hoover, now 13-1, will play for the Alabama Class 6A state championship Saturday at Birmingham's Legion Field.

"We're leaving on Thursday," Camden County senior defensive back Robert Williams said. "We're going to goof off and clown for a couple days, but when you're with your teammates, you can't do much more than think about football."

Milstead said he and his teammates kept busy during that trip to Alabama by swimming and hiking.

But at game time, they had no trouble concentrating on football.

"We stayed at a YMCA camp. We jumped in lakes and did a lot of swimming in ponds. We climbed a mountain. We played cards. That's what it's all about," he said.

"You can't take football too serious. You have to have some type of fun. That's the key to our success this year. …