What East Lincoln’s football state championship means to me


From left: Me, Jade Loendorf, James Holmes, Tori Horne, Maggie Foley, Devlyn Shelnutt, and Michael Hernandez pose in front of Wake Forest University’s Damon Deacon after East Lincoln won the state championship in 2012. increase.

I was a junior at East Lincoln High School when the Mustangs won their first football state championship in 2012. .

The team outscored their opponents 308-108 and most of the game was over by halftime.

The morning of the state championship, six classmates and I made the 70-mile trip to BB&T Field (now Truist Field) at Wake Forest University.

The atmosphere inside the stadium was evocative, with enthusiastic fans in orange and green cheering loudly and cowbells ringing as the Mustangs took to the field, and the anticipation was palpable.

Their opponent was Taboro, which has won the past three state championships in the 2A class and produced former NFL running back Todd Gurley. But the Mustang didn’t back down.

As the final seconds passed, then-coach Mike Vice smiled and hugged the team as chants of “EL You Know” filled the stadium.

Seeing my friends hold the winning trophy in the air, I was overwhelmed with emotion and proud of everything they had accomplished. It was a moment when we all came together.

Community support

I met many of my closest friends and had many memorable experiences in East Lincoln. But before I even stepped foot in the hall, I had a connection with the school.

My mother Shirley, my aunt Tammy and my late uncle Harold graduated from East Lincoln, and my grandparents have lived for over half a century on North Little Egypt Road, about 400 meters from David Clarke Stadium.

EL Graduation 2012.jpg
Members of the 2013 East Lincoln Class, James Holmes (left), Evan Moore (middle) and Colin Rolle (right). Was a member of the 2012 State Championship Team.

Shortly after graduating from college at UNC Charlotte, my career returned to the west side of Lake Norman as a reporter for the Denver Citizens.

During my two years at Citizen, I interviewed several former teachers. For example, David Lebowitz, who is the current head of the East Lincoln football he’s a coach, lived very close to me for a while. Roberta Wilson is a former reporter for the Charlotte Observer who taught me English when I was in fourth grade.

I also have to write about how Denver’s community is rallying around East Lincoln’s athletes.

Residents flocked to cheer on the Mustangs softball team until they lost 6-4 to West Stanley. A month later, the East had his room standing only at Lincoln’s baseball field, and the Mustangs lost 6–4 to Forbush in the third round of the playoffs.

In Denver, supporting a high school athletic team is more than just attending a game.

East Lincoln Sports Boosters is an organization of parents who raise funds for all of the school’s sports and has raised over 600,000 over the last 17 years through sponsorships and donations from local businesses such as Meineke, Hamilton Orthodontics and Joey’s. We have donated more than a dollar to exercise programs. Fine Food & Pizza.

Funding from the booster club allowed East Lincoln to install new scoreboards, improve seating in football stadiums, and install new scoreboards on softball fields.

On Saturday afternoon, hours before the state championship game, hundreds of Mustang supporters gathered in the school parking lot to wish the team well before the bus left for Raleigh.

Victory on the big stage

All eyes were on East Lincoln on Saturday night as the Mustangs closed out an undefeated season with a 30-15 win over the Northern Nash to win the school’s third state title.

I wasn’t at the game, but I watched the live stream on TV with my high school classmates who were on the team in 2012.

Thousands of students, parents, administrators and fans attended, including football players from East Lincoln’s longtime rival North Lincoln High School. Northern his Nash alum Roy his Cooper Gov. of North Carolina also attended the game, Celebrating Mustang Victory on Twitter.

The Mustang is crowned champion again and I experienced many of the same feelings as ten years ago: joy, excitement and pride. And always proud to be a Mustang.

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Evan Moore is a Service Journalism Reporter for Charlotte Observer. He grew up in Denver, North Carolina and previously worked as a reporter for the Denver Citizens. He’s a UNC he’s a Charlotte graduate.

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