One thousand ninety five days

One thousand ninety five days

September 20, 2013, was a cold Friday night, after a long day of rain. Everything cleared up just before the game started. The players were warming up, the cheerleaders were stretching and fans from both sides gathered up their blankets and purchased hot chocolate. The Clinton marching band started it all by playing the National Anthem. Everyone knew this was the big game. Our chance to finally make a breakthrough for the first time in a long three years, there on the Clinton football field, on the one thousand and ninety fifth day, we did it.

Coach Davis and the rest of his coaching staff were a great new addition to the football family this year. When senior Matt Trimble was asked his opinion on the new coaching staff, he replied, “I have all the respect in the world for the new coaching staff, they have put so much work into improving the program. They truly know what they are talking about. This is my ninth year of football and I’ve learned more in this one year than I have my whole life.” Tim Macomb was asked what was different this year than years’ past, he replied, “Well we actually have a great coaching staff this year and they never gave up on us even when we lost the games we lost. They stayed by us and fought with us til the end.” Coach Davis has just as much respect for the seniors as they do for him. When asked his opinion on this year’s seniors he stated, “I have great respect to the seniors, we wouldn’t be where we are without their help and they passed it down to the rest of the team. I’ve been doing this for a long time, 36 years, and they are the finest group of seniors that I’ve ever coached. Their work ethic, their commitment, and their wanting to be good has helped the team tremendously.” Meridian is very thankful for the new coaching staff and of course Mr. Reedy as well, who has been there for them through everything. Everyone was wondering that Friday just what the boys were thinking before the game.

Coach Davis stated going into the game, “It was no different than any other night, you’ve gotta prepare well, give yourself a chance, and on game night you’ve gotta go out and you’ve gotta execute, that particular night was no different except that we played well and the results were different.” Trimble seemed to have a different viewpoint while thinking back, “We all knew what a great opportunity we had. Clinton wasn’t doing good leading up to the game. We got there, it was perfect weather, a great night to play football and we were confident we were going home with a win, even though if you asked us before the game nobody would have told you we were going to win.” Then the game started, and we blew through the first quarter.

At the beginning of the game senior Darren Davis stated, “We didn’t have a good first drive, but Clinton made a mistake, and we took advantage of it.” That first touchdown started it all. As everyone cheered, all Darren Davis could think was “We can’t let them come back now, we need to keep our feet on the gas and keep scoring.” And that is exactly what the Hawks did, taking a huge lead at halftime of 40-0. At halftime lots of chatter was going on about what was going to happen in the locker room. Darren said, “Coach came in the locker room, laughed, and said let’s go men.” Of course being the good coach he is, Darren says Coach Davis added a few things about mistakes that had been made also. The Hawks came back out after halftime just as strong leading to the final score of 53-0.

Through all of the football games there’s always two fans the boys know they can count on and that’s their parents. Everyone could tell at around halftime the emotional impact the game was having on the parents. They finally started cheering with the cheerleaders and there was nothing but smiles on their faces. Morrow says, “My family was very proud; mom and step dad actually set up torches lining both sides all the way down the driveway for me when I got home as a way of celebration.”

Coming back into the small town of Macon, townspeople were awoken by the police escort the boys received. When Trimble was asked about their post game celebrations he said, “Surprisingly there wasn’t much celebrating after we got off the bus, but on the bus ride home it was crazy.” The bus ride home was clearly a very memorable moment for every single team member involved. Morrow states, “On the bus ride home everyone was cheering and yelling, that was just a moment I will never forget.” Darren said, “All we did was scream, yell, and sing on the way home, we were just so excited.”

When Matt, Hayden, Darren, and Tim were asked their final feelings about the game they all said, “I was the happiest I’ve ever been.” Trimble explained how after the game life just kind of went on, he stated, “My excitement was short lived, really I was relieved more than anything. I knew we couldn’t have another 0-9 season, so to finally get a win after 3 years of losing was just a huge relief. Once we got back on Monday it was all over, it was time to focus on the next game.”

The big win meant a lot to not just the football players but the whole Meridian community. For that short moment after the game, everything just felt at peace and everyone seemed to get along. You could just feel the love as Twitter and Facebook feeds filled up with people congratulating the boys. It all seemed to bring everyone together, a moment no one will ever forget.