HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - It's been a known fact for some time now. But on Friday night, it will all sink in for the Bassfield community.
This is when the Yellowjackets will host their final game as a school when Bay Springs comes to visit in the Class 2A south state championship. The school will consolidate with Prentiss next school year.
There is no denying how emotional of a night it will be for coaches, players and fan alike.
"It'll be bitter sweet either way," Yellowjackets coach Lance Mancuso said. "But hopefully we can just focus on the positive and our guys go out and do what they do and give a great effort."
Despite this impending change hovering over them, the Yellowjackets have maintained focus. Even more impressive considering they have a target fitting for the four time defending Class 2A champions.
"Motivation (comes from) the coaches," junior RB/DB Malik Shorts said. "He talks to us everyday about the ones that come before us and that started this tradition and that sign up there that says we play for those who came before us and we set the standard for those who follow.
Mancuso has been impressed with his squad's focus.
"These guys have done a great job of remaining focused and getting better each week," he said. "Just really focusing on the things that they need to do to get better that's going to help them be successful on Friday night."
Come Friday night, the Yellow Jackets hope to provide a memory Bassfield can be thankful for.
"It's going to be very emotional for one," Shorts said. "At the same time we're going to be very turnt because (it's the) last game. (It's) going to be a dog fight basically. We know that right now Bay Springs is preparing for us right now. And they also are trying to accomplish something too. So it's going to be a dog fight."
Even though Bay Springs is the focus for Bassfield, Friday night will leave an impact beyond the white lines.
"We've tried to kind of stay away from that all year," Mancuso said. "But I think the guys have it in their back of their mind. Hopefully we can use that (for) motivation and just go out and play a great game in front of our community for the last time."