Finding Mudville: Wearing the ring
I’ve seen a lot of history here.
A lot of state championships have been won on this end of Berkeley County in a lot of different sports.
In five years I’ve covered three football state championships, a basketball championship, watched Leanna Morrison win almost as many state championships in track as she has fingers, saw Jalen Frazier take home three high jump titles and Bernard Harmon make Timberland history by winning the first wrestling championship in the school’s history.
The Cross Trojans joined Berkeley and Timberland in passing out state championship rings last week, bringing home the first state championship in the school’s and community’s history.
When you see communities like Cross rise up to the challenge when the majority of school district money goes to other places, when you hear an A.D. say he had to almost beg the district to give his athletics department a trainer, you start to cheer for the little guys.
There’s not a lot of money available out here in the sticks and it makes you wonder about the fairness.
I know life isn’t fair and I’m not to hear preach.
The Cross Trojans did what no other Berkeley County team was able to do and they did it with 31 eligible players. That’s half of Timberland and Berkeley’s roster and a third of Goose Creek and Stratford’s. Shaun Wright said his team wasn’t the most talented team on the field but they had the most heart.
This team featured six All-State players and will bring back an offensive triple threat in the Evans twins and Devontae Shepherd. There is nothing to say they won’t do it again.
This state championship was a shot in the arm for the entire Cross community. I saw Trojans’ fans of all ages, young and old, some in strollers and others with walkers. Grandbabies and grandparents, this state championship belongs to every person that calls Cross home.
I saw the same thing when Berkeley won in 2009, but while Moncks Corner reveled in their most recent state championship, the town’s fifth in football, there’s something about a town winning its first. The Cross community needed this championship.
Times are tough and nowhere in Berkeley County are the economic hardships felt more than up in Cross. This is a community where jobs are hard to come by, where money is tight. It needed something to cheer about and to win.
For once the little guy won. And I applaud that.
As much as I am a Berkeley and Timberland fan, I am just as big a Cross fan.
I don’t just cover the sports of these three schools, I root them on. It’s us against them when we line up on opposite sidelines. I’m an unashamed and proud homer.
When it comes to sports and my teams, I root for the home guys.
And when Berkeley plays Timberland or Cross plays Timberland, I experience a conundrum and ultimately wind up rooting for guys (or ladies) who need the win most.
This year it’s the Cross Trojans’ turn, and I was just as happy for those 31 guys standing up there as their mommas and daddies. And I can’t wait to see what they do next year.