My senior year began with high hopes for the football team. All of my friends on the team boasted about how hard they worked this summer and how the team practiced more frequently than ever before. I thought we were going to have a season to be proud of.
I went to the first preseason game and we showed a lot of talent and potential. The quarterback played well on the run, the defense made a few big plays and we were able to come away with a win. All seemed well.
Then, the regular season games began. I wanted to go to every home game because it’s my senior year. This was my last year to go to Chattahoochee football games. This was my last year to cheer on the blue and gold.
Week in and week out, we kept losing games. I still went almost every Friday night, but several of my friends had lost their enthusiasm for the team after a few losses. This cycle continued for what felt like an eternity.
Eventually, it was time for our last game. Habersham Central had been a pretty easy opponent in years past but this year they beat Chattahoochee rival Johns Creek. As a winless team, our whole student body was worried that the team would finish 0-10. As a senior, I wanted to see at least one win.
I came to the game with a hopeful smile on my face. The first half was probably the best I’ve seen in all my years at Chattahoochee. We were up 41-14. This was our game. The team came to win, and the student body was there for the team the whole way through, many of us yelling at the top of our lungs for our last high school football game.
After the win, we exuberantly rushed the field to celebrate the monumental victory. Some of the players and fans were almost brought to tears out of sheer joy. It will surely be one of my favorite high school memories.
Even though we only scored more than our opponents did in one game, I am a firm believer that we had a winning season. I’ve seen more “wins” in other seasons, but this season was full of rich memories that I will have for the rest of my life. My friends and I were all able to enjoy this time together. Considering that we’ll be off at college next year, it’s clear that these games might be one of our last good chances to be together. The games gave me a chance to blow off steam from the stress of the school week and college applications. So for me, this was a winning season. It’s not the scoreboard that matters; it’s the experience. It’s about school pride, a sense of community and enjoying the fresh air under those Friday night lights. It’s about the “oohs” and the “aahs,” the comebacks, the letdowns, the big plays and the blood, sweat and tears that go into a high school football game.
This season was a testament to the resilience and undying faith of our student body. Even when most students at other schools would have turned their back on the team, our fans were there through it all. So regardless of how the scoreboard says our team is doing, make sure to go to all the games. You might just get to see a winning season.