COAL CITY, WV (WVNS) — A Raleigh County high school football team achieved history this year, and they are looking to continue the run.
Even with the pandemic still having an effect on high school sports, the Independence High School football team was able to achieve history. Their undefeated season propelled them to their very first state championship game.
“Oh it’s a special feeling you know it is the first time in school history it has ever been done and just for us to be the first team to ever do it just feels good,” said Logan Phalin, Patriots senior quarterback.
Independence Patriots Head Coach John Lilly and his team already put together a historic season, and are now searching for the perfect way to end it out. In his short time with the program, Lilly said the environment he has created and the way his guys continued to buy in pushed them into this position.
“It definitely feels special to play in a state championship, I said last year that we were gonna play in it and now we just have to go win it,” said Atticus Goodson, senior running back.
After taking down the Bluefield Beavers in the semifinals, the Patriots hit the road for the first time this postseason, as they travel to Wheeling. Standing in the way of a state title is a familiar opponent, the 15 seed Fairmont Senior. The Polar Bears are the last team to beat the Patriots, and the only thing standing in the way of their perfect season.
“They were the last team to beat us, they beat us in the quarterfinals last year they thumped us pretty good so I think that they have our kids attention,” said Lilly.
Lilly said regardless of the storyline or the outcome, he wants his team to go out, have fun and give it their all.
The Patriots kick off the Super Six matchups on Friday, December 3, 2021. at Wheeling Island.