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Battle of the Tallapoosa returns in 2021

The Rebels lead the all-time series after a win in 2020, but both teams are excited to bring back the rivalry in 2021.
Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 8:33 PM CDT
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TALLAPOOSA COUNTY, Ala. (WSFA) - It’s a rivalry that dates back more than two decades - one that was renewed last season for the first time since 2003. The Battle of the Tallapoosa is back, with the 2021 edition happening this Thursday in Reeltown.

“It’s played up, and there’s a lot of bragging rights that go in because it’s really one community separated by a river, so it’s great for the fans, it’s great for the community,” said Reeltown head coach Matt Johnson.

The Rebels captured last years trophy after a 27-21 overtime win. It was a crucial victory, because it gave the Rebels the advantage in the series, and momentum to once again start the season strong.

“As long as that scoreboard is on and you’re keeping score, you want to make sure you have more points at the end of the game than the other team, so that’s always key,” said Johnson. “We’ve got to make plays, and if we make mistakes we’ve got to learn from the mistakes and grow within the game. I think if we do that, everything else will take care of itself.”

But the question is - can they win back to back battles?

After a loss last season, Tallassee head coach Mike Battles and his Tigers are hoping for a different outcome.

“We’ve been with our kids now through the summer and been out practicing,” said Battles. “They’ve done really well. They’re excited - their fans, our fans are excited and I think this is a good way to kick off the season.”

Tallassee High had a few forfeits last season due to COVID-19, but as they work through the final day of practice, the Tigers say they’re ready to start the season on a high note.

“I think just getting back out there and realizing that hey, we can do this,” said Battles. “Nothing has changed, we just had one year that things just didn’t work out, but we can do this.”

This storied rivalry makes its return Thursday at 7 p.m. at Reeltown High School. Tickets can only be purchased online for entry.

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