SPRINGDALE (KFSM) - For a long time, all Shiloh Christian did was win. Their title in 2010 capped a magical run of three straight championships. Now, nine years later, the Saints are finally back.
"The winning is just a culture of Shiloh anyways, and so this year it’s like we finally met the expectation of that, and so we’re just gonna try and go win. It’s really special to everyone here," says senior Keaton Carter.
Jeff Conaway is ready for his first head coaching appearance in a state title game.
"We know it doesn’t happen every year, even though we wish it would."
It's the moment seniors like Eli Reece and Truitt Tollett have been working towards.
"It’s been the goal ever since we started in seventh grade, every team is just trying to get to War Memorial, so we’re honored to be the team that gets back."
"It’s been a long time coming, this senior class is really hungry for it."
And, as they have all season, Shiloh will lean on this year’s special class of 24 seniors to lead the way, says Reece.
"All season we’ve stressed that this doesn’t need to be a coach led team, it needs to be a player led team, so our senior class has really taken it on this week.:
"We want them to lead as they always have, we want them to make sure their influence on others is positive," adds Conaway.
And there wold be no better send off for the seniors than a state championship, according to coach.
"They’ve sacrificed a lot for this team, this program, over many many years here at Shiloh, and for them to go out on top would be great, they’ve earned it."
"It’s been the goal for my whole high school career, and I’m finally here," smiles Carter. Reece agrees.
"It’s a tremendous opportunity, and it’s what every guy dreams if, senior year, to finish in the state championship."
It won't come easy. Joe T. Robinson comes in at 13-1, and the Senators have more experience on this stage, having lost in the title game just last year.
The Saints are 14-0, and all but one game this season has been decided by at least tree touchdowns. They go for perfection Friday night at 7pm inside War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock.