CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Charlotte Latin needed a little extra time to prepare for Friday's state championship game against Charlotte Christian, and a little extra light, using car headlights as things got dark on Tuesday night.

"It was kind of different," said Head Coach Larry McNulty. "I hope I've got some gas left in my truck."

The Hawks and Knights clash Friday night in the Independent School championship. Charlotte Latin won the regular-season matchup and is hoping for its first title since 2009.

"These seniors feel like it's their time," said McNulty. "And we're excited for them."

Lineman Robert Fuller has been a bright spot for the Hawks on and off the field.

"You look at him and you talk to him and watch him play football and he seems like this rough and tough guy," said McNulty, "then you find out he's this amazing scholar who could go to any college in the United States."

Fuller is looking at several well-respected schools including Williams and Sewanee. He might study biology and one day perhaps become a doctor.

And he balances that with being a co-captain for the unbeaten Hawks

"It's a challenge," said Fuller. "I think it's worth it."

But Fuller's focus on Friday is helping his team, and fellow seniors, to a state title.

"We've been pretty clear about that with each other since day one," Fuller said. "We've been pretty focused on that goal."