After taking a loss in last years state title game, the Many Tigers went to work immediately, with a chip on their shoulder.
Now, with an undefeated season, the cherry is on top as they defeat the Kinder Yellowjackets, 16-13.
Head coach, Jess Curtis, says it feels a whole lot better this time around.
“It feels great, and that’s the parallel I saw all season. A team that got here last season, got embarrassed and you pick yourself off the canvas and go to work. Today was about finishing some unfinished business.”
Undoubtedly, a defensive battle.
The Many Tigers came up big not only on tackles, forcing 3-in-outs, but two big picks.
Safety, Tackett Curtis, for 9 yards, and a pick-six from Outstanding Player of the Game, Tylen Singleton.
“I was waiting for when the motion came and replaced the safety. It felt good to try and help my team score. It was hard on offense to help push and keep them going.”
Curtis says that Many’s offensive play is always applauded, but this game was a spotlight to his defense holding Kinder under 100 yards both rushing and passing, and only 7 first downs to their 11.
“We got tired of not hearing about our defense. Nobody once said a word about our defense all week and that fires me up. It fired my boys up.”
With those ties on the field, this game has been a three-game series, Many now taking the lead 2-1.
As far as the coaching staff goes, Coach Curtis and Coach Fuselier of Kinder share a greater bond beyond the field.
“It’s crazy, but me and Jess are really good friends. Even in Christmas Day, we’re texting back and forth. Whenever you play in games like this, our two previous games were kind of the same thing, you create that bond with somebody else because you went toe-to-toe with them. It’s special, it’s things you remember and you have nothing but respect for what they do.”
Curtis echoes, “That program is unbelievable. Brett Fuselier has done such a great job over there. I just want to tip my hat to those guys because they brought it too. It was just our night.”
Senior quarterback, ZeQuarrius “Cadillac” Rhone says that going into this game, they thought about the last championship team from 2014.
“We said we wanted to relive the glory of the 2014 team because we were all young watching that team and we saw how legendary that was and we wanted to go out the same way.