While standing in the hallway, a couple of Cedar Bluff’s water boys were bringing in equipment from the field. I couldn’t help but notice the tears flowing as they walked by. It was obvious the Tigers’ loss hurt them as much as the young men they idolize.
Then it dawned on me. Another football season had come to a close.
A state championship won’t be coming to the area this year, but even so, that doesn’t take away from what this season brought.
Since we’re just a few days away from Thanksgiving, here’s a few things I’m thankful for witnessing on the field in 2012:
• Cedar Bluff, Piedmont's undefeated regular seasons.
Those are hard feats to accomplish, especially with both teams part of such competitive regions.
• Spring Garden’s record-breaking year.
Jason Howard’s return saw the Panthers finish at 9-3 behind a 1,900-yard, 26-touchdown performance from senior running back Forrest Livingston.
• Sand Rock’s perseverance.
The Wildcats battled their way to another playoff spot after many people felt it might be a down year for them.
• Collinsville QB C.J. Jones.
Jones stepped up to the challenge and delivered as one of the area’s top passers after following in the footsteps of Nathan Coker.
• The Trojan workhorse.
Gaylesville featured one of the area’s top running backs/linebackers in senior John David Jennings, who rushed for over 1,300 yards and posted 75 tackles.
• The Warriors’ feel-good moment.
It wasn’t the easiest of seasons in Centre, but the Cherokee County Warriors finally earned their first win in their last attempt, sending their seniors out on top.
Thanks to all those involved for making it another thrilling ride for this sportswriter to cover.
Congratulations go out to former Cherokee County Warrior and current Miles College sophomore standout D.J. Fife.
Fife led the Golden Bears to an 8-3 season and the Division II playoffs. The Bears lost to West Alabama 41-7 on Saturday.
Fife finished the year with 19 catches for 443 yards and three touchdowns. He also had six kick returns for 192 yards and a touchdown.
The Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame announced its newest class this weekend.
Selected was Joe Evans, a former basketball coach and former associate executive director of the AHSAA, volleyball coach Julie Sinclair, coach/administrator Denise Rhodes Ainsworth, basketball coaches Raymond White, Jim Hunter Jr., and Larry Davidson, wrestling coach Stephen Gaydosh, baseball coach Michael Estes, football coaches Ben Harris and Arthur “Buddy” Davis, administrator Jim Tuley and basketball official Greg England.
The 2013 class will be inducted at March 18 in Montgomery.