Championship Reunion

By Coleman Swierc

CHAPEL HILL, TX (KLTV) - Chapel Hill principal Lamond Dean is looking forward to the idea, of another championship for his school.

"It is a surreal, just a really amazing thought."

But the pride he feels now, can never be matched, to what he and his former teammates felt 21 years ago.

Ppeople see us, as something of a little heroic," said Dean, a nose tackle on the 1989 team. "Just because of what we did has not been accomplished again."

"It is something we cherish everyday, gives them something to know how we mold, and mesh together, and what it takes," said Joel Smith, the left tackle on the '89 team. "It show the sacrifice and the commitment, to get to the state championship, it is awesome."

The 1989 Bulldogs barely made the playoffs, needing a last game win and a henderson win, just to get in.

And as destiny would have it.

They did.

"We were six and four at the end of district play, and we got to the playoffs," said defensive end Darby Hodges, "And we were the underdogs with everyone that we played."

"Our offense finally picked up, we were mostly a defensive team, but once our offense kicked in, we finally started rolling then," remembered running back Delithro Bell.

Then the team that no one thought would win, did.

Despite the odds.

"There were 64 teams in the first round, and we were ranked 64, then 32 and we were 32," said Dean, "And every week, we were the last place team, and they kept thinking that glass slipper was going to fall off, but it never did."

Smith added, "We finally just clicked, and started hitting on all cylinders, and we just went on with that."

With each week came another win, and another lifelong memory.

"I remember, Delithro busted one for 50 yards, untouched against Denison," said Dean, "And we knew the winner of that game would win it all. And we did."

The playoff run culminated at the Astrodome, with a state championship on the line.

Awaiting the Bulldogs was A&M Consolidated, the team thought to be unbeatable.

"The Houston Chronicle had in the paper, that it was David vs Goliath in the state championship," said Dean, "They were one of the largest 4A teams in the state, we were one of the smallest, we only had about 800 some odd kids."

Getting to the game, proved to be just as challenging.

"Our bus actually did 360's on the road across from the hotel," laughed Hodges. "It was ice everywhere, and it was cold."

In the end, the game was played.

And from the first snap, the underdogs, took control.

"They tried that reverse, and Alandus Mathews broke it up," remembered Bell, "And that set the momentum right there."

When it was over, a 14-0 Chapel Hill win, they laughed and cried.

They had done what no one thought they could.

"It was just like the bible verse said, David took care of Goliath."

Their picture now hangs, in the halls at Chapel Hill High School, for everyone to see.

Their trophy, right beside it, hoping that another will join them.

But always remembering, that the first time, was the best time.

"That year, is right here, right in our hearts, and it is never going to go away, it belongs to us. Forever."

The 2010 version of Chapel Hill faces Henderson on Friday night at Cowboys Stadium.

A win, would give Chapel Hill, it's 2nd state title.

*Copyright, KLTV, 2010.