Now this is what high school football is all about

Published 12:23 am Thursday, October 24, 2019

One of the blessings of being the Sports Editor for the Elizabethton Star is watching the excitement on the faces of young men and women who accomplish things that many people don’t give them a chance to do.
This past weekend was one of those times standing on the sidelines and watching young men beam from ear to ear after defeating what seemed to have been an unbeatable opponent in the last 12 years as the Elizabethton Cyclones took down Greeneville 24-21 after trailing by 14 points late.
I honestly was standing there the whole time thinking that I was living in the movie Facing the Giants where a small Georgia high school took on a team that had won several state championships with unsurmountable odds going against them only to see the small team win on a last-second field goal.
It almost made me think what area football could be like if fans came out like they did Friday night with close to 5,000 fans on hand to witness the contest. In Texas, it’s not uncommon to see 10 to 12 thousand fans pour into stadiums statewide for Friday Night Lights football contest.
The energy was amazing as the game had ups and downs for both teams but in the end, the Cyclones were able to finally claim the right to be the first team to earn a conference win in 12 years over the Greene Devils.
A little later that night, a friend on social media asked what was the bigger game – the Elizabethton or Hampton game where the Bulldogs absolutely pounded the unbeaten South Greene Rebels into submission with a humbling 30-0 defeat.
I guess what I have found out since coming on board full time in my current position is that I L-O-V-E being able to cover athletics in Carter County whether it be a flag football game to a state championship contest in any sport.
The reason why is the kids that lay it out there on the line representing their schools and their county. Granted not every team can experience success like some of their counterparts at another school.
However, I personally want each player, coach, school, and community in Carter County to know that I feel honored to try my best to provide coverage of all the teams whether you are 10-0 or 0-10.
We have a talented team of writers in Allen LaMountain, Austin Alexander, Nic Miller, and Danny Blevins who I personally cannot thank enough for their commitment to helping in making sure we have coverage at each school and I couldn’t do it without their invaluable assistance.  Larry Souders, Brandon Hyde, and Dawn Lambert provide some great photos to use with the stories as well.
There is more to sports than just winning the game. I see it as developing close bonds, learning what it means to be a part of a team, lifting up others who might be down, walking across the field after a 45-0 defeat to shake the hand of the other team who was the better team on that particular night, and being able to have the feeling that one gave everything they had on the field of battle.
It’s sort of an image of life if you think about it.
We have five teams that will be playing in the playoffs this season when the regular football season ends next Friday night. I am pumped and stoked that all five have the opportunity to play at least one more game in the season and hope that one or more advance for a chance to earn a gold ball.
One thing to always remember is that when playoffs start, all win and loss records are out the window. It’s like being 0-0 once again and each week it’s do or die, win and survive or lose and go home.
And like the players and coaches, this writer isn’t ready for football to be over just yet.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox