Progress for Pigeon Forge

Sep. 08, 2013 @ 07:49 PM

 In football, victory is defined by the score.

The team wins or loses the game based on the number of points on the scoreboard. But for the young men on the team, there’s a lot more to victory than carrying a ball across a line of paint, and that’s what Coach Scott Meadows worked to tell his players Friday night after they lost a heartbreaker in overtime to the Carter Hornets, 27-24

“I know what you’ve done. I know how you laid it on the line,” he said. “I know what you did this summer…I don’t care what anyone says… This is a dang good football team. We took a 4A team into overtime.”

There’s no spot on the scoreboard for moral victories, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. The Tigers have still never beaten the Hornets but they successfully served notice to everybody on the rest of their schedule that Pigeon Forge is for real. You may get them down, but you can never count them out. Down nine points at the start of the fourth quarter, the Tigers clawed back into the lead on the strength of two touchdown drives, while bottling up the Hornet offense for most of three quarters.

“I told them that in 25 years of coaching, I had never been more proud of a team in my entire life, the way they laid it out here tonight,” Meadows said.

Next week, the Tigers must go on the road to Newport and face Cocke County. When you’ve just played and lost a close game like this one, your team can do one of two things. They can lay down, practice flat, and take weeks to recover, or they can get hungry.

Listening to Meadows and the young men on the field with him, my money is on hungry.