Starkville High School football

Starkville High School quarterback Luke Altmyer (9) checks with the sideline for a play call during last week’s game against Clinton.

There’s a relatively small sample size, but if the last two years are any indication the Class 6A North State champion could be decided in tonight’s game in Starkville.

Of course, it’s not an exact science, but the winner of this game between Starkville and Horn Lake in each of the last two years has advanced to the state championship.

The Jackets ended the Eagles’ season in 2017 with a 35-7 victory in the second round and Horn Lake got its shot in last year and beat SHS 35-14. Fans will remember the Jackets ultimately lost the 6A championship in 2017 in a hard-fought loss against Pearl in Oxford while Horn Lake fought off Oak Grove and won it all last year in Hattiesburg.

Starkville head coach Chris Jones has now faced off with the Eagles in each of his three seasons as coach of the Jackets. Prior to that, SHS hadn’t played the school since 2010.

The Jackets had their first loss to Horn Lake in the nine games played in the series since 2004 and the Eagles are hoping to get back on track Friday night.

For more on Starkville as it tries to advance in the playoffs, see Friday's Starkville Daily News.

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