Finishing a season undefeated is one of the hardest feats to accomplish in football. Not only did the Sealy Tigers junior varsity football team accomplish just that but many members of the team have gone undefeated through the past few years.
The group’s latest undefeated season came to a close on Nov. 9 when they beat the West Columbia Roughnecks 26-12 to finish the season 9-0. It was the team’s seventh consecutive game they won by double digits.
For the team’s head coach Clark Harrell, the team’s success not only stems from their physical attributes but their will and camaraderie as a team.
“It’s not like you watch our bunch and you’re blown away by speed or size or strength. They just play really tough and give great effort as a group,” Harrell said. “One of the biggest parts is how close that bunch is and that’s something they do is just love each other and be close as a family.”
The team’s closest game of the season was their season opener against St. Pius X when the Tigers would rally after being down early to win the game 20-16.
Harrell pointed out to a few specific players among the group who helped the team’s dominance throughout the season.
“Carter Cryan made plays all year at quarterback and he’s a tremendous competitor and plays really gutsy so he was a big part of the offense,” Harrell said. “Keen Brown was a two-way player at receiver and defensive back who was steady all year and made plays along with Luke Thielemann at the defensive line.”
Harrell echoed that not just those players but the team as a whole is responsible for the group’s prolonged success – success they hope to carry on as more of them rise to the varsity team in the coming years.
Harrell said that while he would prefer the team’s undefeated streak to continue through the next few years at the varsity level, it is a different game and an eventual loss may become a reality.
“We tell them that at some point you’re going to get beat and so learning how to handle that and deal with loss and bounce back from it is going to be big,” Harrell said. “I think they’re a bunch that can handle that.”
The coach added that even though the team wants to protect its streak, their talent and ability they will bring to the varsity level is what really makes them special.
“I’m really excited to see what they do because obviously varsity football is a different animal but this group does have something special in the way they compete and love each other,” Harrell said. “I’m excited to see how that all translates to the next level.”