Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Championship Run

The Championship Run
Rev. Coach Peter T. Atkinson

With the heat of the August sun burning down
The Barons came together in good old Dyke town
For what was to be their season of glory,
So listen to me as I tell you the story.
100 yard sprints with a short time to beat
Then, three practices a day in that sweltering heat
Learning the I, and the 3-5-3
Keeping it simple on O and on D
Getting in shape, to catch, tackle, and run
Did I fail to mention the heat from the sun
But together we grew, through weights in the pool
And after only a week headed to Potomac School
To scrimmage against them, and those Episcopal boys
Who tested our skills and our quarterbacks' poise
A couple big plays showed us our strong potential,
But we saw how endurance would also be essential
For with all the players playing both ways
It would be hard to get through those hot Saturdays.
So before we collapsed we called it a win
In another week the regular season would begin
But at Blue Ridge School nothing is cake like
With freshmen away, and a bonfire snake bite
One quarterback hurt, and the other with fumbles
It was hard to watch our exchanges and stumbles
Also with Jared out with his knee
We played our first game with only sixteen.
Though we were fast, we just could not behave
Luckily for us it was only Hargrave,
Turnovers and penalties, sun, wind, and rain
Somehow we scored again and again
A win is a win is a win so they say,
But wins would be thin if we still played that way
So we the next week traveled to Blessed Sac
Giving the ball to our three running backs
Breaking two hundred and fifty we grounded
With power and ice we dove and we pounded
We hit them, we hurt them, ambulance lights flashing
23-7 didn't quite capture the thrashing,
But we celebrated in style with pizza by starlight
And who could forget those cookies were  just right
Such support we've gotten from our parents all season
Giving us love and giving us a reason
Their love it was always shining so bright
Their cheering,  it urged us on through the fight
Numbers, numbers, Our numbers were few
But the seed was planted and therefore it grew.
Inspiring to play Canada's lax guy named Pace
Then a short time later we also got Chase
Each man counted for every man we'd need
Every one's contribution we'd need to succeed
But rolling on we did, back home against North Cross
We fell behind early, but would not suffer our first loss
41 unanswered points we would score on,
Once we got it going the points we would pour on
But slow starts had become part of our game
The next two wins were more of the same,
Both requiring last second drives,
Fighting and clawing, scratching for our lives,
In the first we got more trouble than expected
When just standing on the sideline coach got ejected
And in the second we put on a Homecoming show
But we trailed in it too with just a minute to go
Needing last second passes to put both games away
Against Covenant twas Leon, St. Stephens P.J.
We'd talked all week about coming together
Adversity sought to divide us but we wouldn't let her
We knew that we had to depend on each other
Bleeding and battling, brother to brother.
Again a win is a win, and now we'd won five
But our next game would come after a 3 hour drive
Down to Christchurch a debt had to be paid
For last year we'd lost both games we played
But injuries got us, changing our game,
Who could forget Cody writhing in pain
Close it was and close we kept it,
But they kept the ball we couldn't intercept it
So that Tuesday our perfect season was tattered
But we knew we could beat them next time when it mattered
And so we played again just four days hence
Back home inside the split rail fence
The Bishops came visiting to end our despair
With our running game slowed we went to the air
And we saw the return of our prodigal son
Darryl Smith's senior season had finally begun
He opened it up with a bomb down the sideline
It didn't take long for the man to make headlines
But the man of the day was our man Shawn Steen
Hobbled by injury, playing but winged
Tears in his eyes he made three kicks
Scored two touch downs, and grabbed two picks.
And after the copter and the ambulance finally came
Flying highest of high, we won our sixth game
All season we seemed to  start off slow
Now starting slow would catch up to us though
I wouldn't believe it if I hadn't seen it
Not even in nightmares could anyone dream it.
For off to Liberty we would travel to next
But the Bulldogs muscles were ripped and flexed
And score at will they did fast and often
Five scores in five minutes put us in the coffin
But they weren't done until they scored fifty four
They say when it rains that also it pours
The Barons were humbled neath those stadium lights,
But a season isn't defined in only one night
Rebound we had to, and rebound we did
We had to get off of that single game skid,
And what better way than to face poor St. Anne's
Stomping their face in, in front of their fans.
With the running game back healthy and ready to roll
Recapturing momentum was our biggest goal
Knowing we can always score with the pass
We pushed and we fought and we just kicked their ass
We again ran right, left and around
Gaining two fifty again on the ground.
True greatness we were right on the verge
Our offensive line regaining their surge
And into the playoffs we took our space
And since they lost Christchurch traveled out to our place,
With Leon on the sidelines, Muji and PJ at home
We counted on each other to get the job done
With 26 yards in the first half on offense
Coach Patterson's speech was simple and intense
He looked every player straight in their eyes
And asked for whatever they still had inside
We knew that we needed to show we were tough
It must have been much or at least just enough
For we came out a totally different team
Returning again to our run the ball theme
Pounding and pushing like we'd done often before
We marched down the field and scored two more
Then we ended the game with one final statement
Pushing across Cody for that one debt payment
And onward the Barons would forward to go
And face Nansemond Suffolk tomorrow we know
One game left to determine the champ
The journey we started way back in camp
What those Saints from Suffolk will see
Is a team that has grown exponentially
Grown together,  tested by fire and pain
Performing in sunshine, heat, cold, and rain
We can't be defeated standing with one another
Battling and Bleeding, together as brothers
There is no doubt we have in our grip
The sweet, sweet victory of the championship!
Because you can hear Coach Patterson say with a grin,
"If you put on that jersey, you might as well win!
And so we did, 41-16, state champs, enough said.