Star wide receiver Demarcus Robinson and the Peach County Trojans came up short of a GHSA Class AAA title Saturday at the Georgia Dome, but Robinson kept everything in perspective.
In fact, most of the Trojans players and coaches did.
Sure it was disappointing that Peach County didn’t win its fourth state title in seven years; Burke County made sure of that by winning its first title with a 28-14 decision. But the feeling outside the Peach County locker room wasn’t one of overwhelming sadness or despair because of the loss.
Instead, Robinson, Peach County’s dynamic playmaker, his teammates and coaches took the big picture view, and they were right to do so.
“We were the underdogs all season; no one expected us to get this far, but we made it this far,” Robinson said. “Everyone thought we’d go 5-5 and miss the playoffs and not have a good season, but we made it to the championship game, and we have to be proud of that.”
Indeed, the Trojans should be proud of the season they had.
Peach County has built one of the top programs in the state, and the Trojans and their fans should enter each season with hopes of winning a state title. But head coach Chad Campbell has said a few times that this wasn’t the most talented Trojans team he has been around. And that talent took a big hit with a couple of key injuries before the season, so the Trojans faced a tough task this season.
They stepped up to that test in a big way with a 13-2 finish and their second trip to the championship game in Campbell’s five seasons as their head coach. That they fell one game short of a title, against a Burke County offense that had a shot to set a state record for points scored in a season, should take nothing away from what the Trojans accomplished.
Anyone who says different is just wrong and way off base.
Peach County finished 9-1 in the regular season with its only loss coming to West Laurens. The Trojans rebounded from that loss to win their third straight region title, beating Baldwin in an exciting game in the final week regular season. The playoff road started with wins over Worth County and Ridgeland and included victories over state powerhouses Carrollton and Cairo, leading the Trojans to the Georgia Dome on Saturday against the Bears.
For a half, things looked good for Peach County, but Burke County dominated the second half to win the championship. Still, there was plenty of pride from the Peach County players, coaches and fans after the game, and there should be. Campbell got a little emotional Saturday as he talked about this year’s senior class, and that was understandable. That group provided outstanding leadership for the program and kept it among the state’s best, which has become something Peach County fans can count on each season.
The Trojans have gone 41-3 the past three seasons, winning one state title and playing for another to continue to the program’s dominant run of success since 2003.
And one loss Saturday is certainly nothing to be ashamed of or disappointed about.
Contact Daniel Shirley at 744-4227 or firstname.lastname@example.org