Angelic-like choir voices and piano music filled the Mission College Prep High School gymnasium Friday morning just before holy water was sprinkled onto the football team's gold-and-blue helmets in honor of the CIF divisional championship game against Rio Hondo Prep School in Arcadia
It’s been almost 50 years since Mission Prep competed for the championship title.
“I think it shows the new era and what we’ve done – all the work we’ve put into it,” Royals quarterback Tyler Baty said.
The 17-year-old senior said everyone is excited that all the hours of workouts and practice have led them the team to this point.
A 54-26 victory over Salesian High School in last week's semifinals brought the Royals to the CIF-Southern Section Northeast Division championship game. The team is slated to travel there by bus at noon.
The morning “blessing of the helmets” ceremony, honoring the 53-student football team, brought tears to the eyes of school Athletic Director Bailey Brown.
“This is why we coach … this is the championship,” she said, noting how proud she was of all the athletes and their coaches.
Head coach Chad Henry said that Mission Prep previously went CIF championships in 1962 and 1964.
“You are already making history for Mission College Prep; this community,” the Rev. Russell Brown of Mission San Luis Obispo said at the assembly. “You inspire us. You have all year.”