My son’s high school (and eventually other 3 kids’ high school) is playing in the AAA state football championship game at the Tacoma Dome tonight. I wish them the best of luck. Unfortunately, I can’t make it due to other commitments. When I moved up to this area, the Spartans won the AAAA state championship and moved back down to AAA after that. Last year they didn’t fare as well but they’re back up and running. I coached in the Skyline Spartan youth football program and really feel they’re doing the right thing and it shows since this is the 2nd time in the 3 years that I’ve been here that the high school is playing the championship game.
Tonight’s game is a little more exciting for me for one single reason…REVENGE! Let me take you back to 1990 when I was a Junior in high school. I attended Prairie High School (AAA at the time) in Brush Prairie, WA. I was the starting right guard (only junior that started on offense) and we made it to the playoffs. The first round, after having basically been written off by everyone was exciting as we beat a team that was supposed to be the top dog. We then had to travel up north to that field that’s right next to the space needle (can’t remember the name). Here’s the connection, the team we played was O’Dea, the same team that Skyline is playing tonight. I am one that usually accepts a loss as a loss and never complain about the officiating (well, there was that Seahawk Super Bowl thing a little while ago, but that’s not the point). It was 4th quarter and we were ahead by I believe 1 point. O’Dea had the ball and the clock was almost out. With the clock winding down, they made a good play to get them in field goal range. The kicker was that they were all out of timeouts and there was only seconds on the clock which means we were about to come away with a victory since it would have been a miracle for them to set up and hike the ball to kick the field goal. So, Murphy’s law kicks in and the officials…STOPPED THE CLOCK! Keep in mind, O’Dea didn’t have any timeouts left and there was only like 3 seconds left in the game. They stopped the clock allowing O’Dea to setup for the field goal. The officials started the clock, O’Dea hiked the ball and made the field goal to run away with the victory. We were absolutely devastated and frankly we were robbed. We ended up taking 7th in state that year.
Fast forward to 1991 when I entered college as a freshman. As if God was looking down at me to test my adversity, one of my college roommates (I lived in a 4 person dorm) was from O’Dea. He remembered the game and also agreed it was a fluke. Oh well. Tonight will be sweet revenge