Charles Henderson hosting ‘Champions Night” Friday

Published 10:25 pm Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Sports champions from Charles Henderson’s past and present will be honored Friday night at half time of the Trojans’ game against Alabama Christian Academy at Veterans Memorial Stadium.

The school is hosting “Champions Night” in conjunction with the football game, and will honor the 1980 football state champions along with the 2004 and 2013 baseball state champions. In addition to being recognized at half, the 2013 baseball team will also be presented with its championship rings.

Derek Irons, head coach of the 2013 baseball team, said that receiving the ring is something that he and his players have looked forward to since taking home the title in May.

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“When you think about winning a title, several things come to mind,” Irons said. “You think about the dog pile, and the trophy and everything else. But everyone gets excited when you get that ring. It is something the guys can have and cherish for the rest of their lives. I know I am excited, and I’m sure the rest of the guys are as well.”

The 1980 football team was recently named the greatest Troy area football team of all time by Messenger readers. The 1980 Trojans, led by iconic head coach Jay Jeffcoat, captured the school’s only state championship, knocking off Hartselle 14-7. The Trojans rolled to a perfect 13-0 record, giving up an average of just 9.2 points per game. Running back Jerry Beverly and lineman Willie Collins earned all-state mentions following the title season.

The 2004 baseball team captured the hearts of the city of Troy en route to, what at the time was a school record for wins, and the 2004 title. The team knocked off Cullman 14-4 and 7-6 in the title series to clinch the coveted title. Pete Van Horn was named MVP of the title series.

Irons said the night would be a great event for all of Charles Henderson, not just the 2013 champs.

“We wanted to honor those teams that had reached the top before us, as well,” Irons said. “The other teams will be there to kind of welcome this 2013 team in to that championship fraternity. Everyone that I have spoken with from the other two teams is excited about that as well, and we would love to welcome the 2013 football team and the other sports teams to this group in future.

Festivities begin with a dinner and reception at 5:30 p.m. in the CHHS cafeteria, and the ceremony will be conducted at halftime.