Speaking before a large turnout at the Clover Football Awards Banquet held in the high school cafeteria earlier this month, head coach Jet Turner lauded every facet of the team's strong support base.
He issued a special thank you to players' parents and coaches' wives.
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“We appreciate the parents,” Turner said. “You have great kids.They have good attitudes and gave great effort.”
“I want to thank the coaches' wives, including my wife,” Turner continued. “The demands of the coaching profession takes us away from our wives and places family burdens on them.”
In thanking members of the Clover Touchdown Club, Athletic Booster Club, community supporters and Clover High School faculty and staff, Turner said: “Thank you for all the countless hours of help and support you have given the players and coaches of the football team.
“We benefit greatly from all you do and our success as a team cannot be accomplished without your support. The boys thank you as well for giving them opportunities they may not normally have.”
CHS athletic trainer Kim Bressler spoke of the student trainers' dedication and commitment.
Turner offered words of praise to junior varsity football coach Alex Love and JV team members.
“The JVs were small but they competed and did a super job,” he said. “The future looks bright.”
Varsity football awards recipients included the following:
Offensive line, Caleb Long; running backs, Tyron Douglas and Max Elliott; defensive line, Malcolm Grant; defensive back, Tra Latta; team first, Aaron Miller; coaches award, Garrett Duke; most improved, Davontay Brown; Blue Eagle award, Evan Jackson; Clover Touchdown Club $2,500 scholarship award, John Moss.
Long was recognized for grading 80 percent or better in 588 career plays as an offensive lineman.
Turner labeled Douglas and Elliott “great” running backs. “They know when it's time to go to work.”
Other words of praise to Blue Eagle standouts:
Jackson: “Unselfish player, a joy to coach. Throw the ball to him and he will ctach it.”
Duke: “From the scout team to stepping up when our quarterback went down, Garrett did a great job.”
Miller: “A great competitor. He knows what it takes to win.”
Charles McClure, president of the Clover Touchdown Club, presented the scholarship award to Moss for classroom excellence.
“We have 171 members,” McClure said of the club's membership status. “Seventy-one of those members donated $100 each to the $2,500 scholarship.”
Said Turner of the Touchdown Club's impact on the football program, “There is none better in South Carolina. They've provided everything I've asked for.”
The Blue Eagles concluded a banner season with a gut-wrenching, down-to-the-wire playoff loss to the Dorman Cavaliers, who defeated mighty Byrnes for the State Division 1 4A championship.
CHS players named to the All-Region 3-AAAA team include: Douglas, Elliott, Latta, Long, Miller and Aukeem Ruff.