Kilgore Bulldogs Headed To State - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

12/13/04-Kilgore

Kilgore Bulldogs Headed To State

The undefeated Kilgore Bulldogs are looking for their first state championship ever. The Bulldogs are counting on team spirit, hard work, and a few superstitions to help bring home the trophy.

This is no ordinary week at Kilgore High. But then again, this is no ordinary team. The Bulldogs are 15 and 0. Still school is school. "This is semester exam week so we're trying to get not overly excited," says principal Bobby Wheeley.

But the students are excited and who can blame them. Extraordinary wins call for extraordinary measures. The Bulldogs and their fans rely on a little help from tradition, but some would call them superstition. "I eat donuts. I eat donuts every week, about 6 to 7 glazed before every game," says 4A player of the year Keith Gilliam.

Some superstitions are a little more delicate than others. "I have the same boxers I wear every week," says defensive end Eddie Jones.

Even the cheerleaders have similar traditions, "some of the girls wear the same underwear every week," says cheerleading sponsor Sandie Crawford.

The cheerleaders even believe wearing warm ups at the games helps. Last week they tried it without them. "We were losing so about 4th quarter I told the girls to get their warm ups. We scored right after that," says Sandie.

Head coach Mike Vallery says it's not about superstition, it's about consistency. "Our kids are used to the way things are done. If I walked in and said we're doing things differently this week, they'd be the first ones to say no coach, let's do it like we were,'" says coach Vallery.

The entire city of Kilgore has gotten behind the Bulldogs. Just before the team's regular practice today, Mayor Joe Parker made an announcement. "Be it further proclaim Saturday 2004 as Victory Day in Kilgore as our raging red Bulldogs bring home the victory of state championships. Congratulations guys."

The entire community is also invited to a pep rally for the team. It'll be this Thursday at 7 PM at the Kilgore football stadium. The big game will be Saturday at Floyd Casey stadium in Waco at 2 o'clock. They're taking on Dallas-Lincoln.

Amy Tatum, reporting. atatum@kltv.com

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