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Wrecking Crew getting back together

SoVaNow.com / January 07, 2021
Mention the 1991 Halifax County High School state football championship in earshot of anyone that knows Comets sports history and a sense of pride is immediately exhibited.

Owning one of two state titles – the other belonging to the 1984 Comet baseball team – the ’91 squad is still remembered as the Wrecking Crew. The name coming about as the team totally dismantled their competition on way to a perfect 14-0 season.

The culmination of the season was the title win over L.C. Bird High School. En route to the title one obstacle stood in the Comets’ path - GW-Danville.

The Comets, under head coach Larry Smith, went on to best GW two times during the season, once in regular season and the opening rounds of postseason play. GW at the time had one of the highest ranked football teams in the state.

Needless to say the 1991 Comet football team and the history it occupies at HCHS still inspires student-athletes today.

Fast forward 30 years later and members of the Wrecking Crew plan to return to the gridiron, this time for a little adult fun and to impart some education to young athletes.

Vincent “Scooter” Sutphin was a member of that memorable team. Like a lot of his teammates, Sutphin went on to enjoy some college athletics; his at Virginia State University.

He and a few other guys from the championship team have been working for some time to offer a football clinic for youngsters and a game of football for fun for former players. Sutphin said things started to fall in place nearing the end of last year.

“Coach Medley, he and I are good friends; we went to Virginia State University,” said Sutphin speaking of Coach Darrell Medley. “So during the time I think he was going through the interview trying to be the [football] coach at Halifax.

“He and Michel Lewis (HCHS principal) ended up having a conversation later on and in that conversation he mentioned to him that we had a GW, Halifax game brewing. And Michael Lewis thought it was a good idea.”

Sutphin said of course they wanted to hold the event at the stadium where they won the championship. He said they signed an agreement to hold the event at the HCHS Tuck Dillard Memorial Stadium.

“So, from there he just needed a date and from that date [we’ve] signed what they call an Activity Agreement to have the stadium for that day. So we signed the agreement to have the stadium for Sept. 18, 2021.”

Sutphin said they hope to offer a free football clinic for kids ages seven-16. After the football clinic they plan on providing a meal for participants.

“Around 11:30, maybe 12:30 we want to have what we’re calling a Legends Game,” Sutphin said. “That will be GW vs Halifax. Some of the guys that are participating in the game will probably be some of the guys hosting the clinic.’

Stuphin believes with the wealth of talent that was on the team, the players from both squads would have a vast amount of knowledge and stories to share to inspire younger athletes.

Right now Sutphin said he’s hoping to make contact with some of his fellow teammates that he’s lost touch with. He knows not all former players will be able to attend but he’d like to get as many to the stadium as he possibly can.

“It’s a few guys I’m looking for through Facebook and stuff …” Sutphin said. “Because I feel like if I can get these guys in town that played in different colleges and played at different levels if would be good to have a football clinic for these kids to learn a few things.”

Sutphin said as far as GW’s participation, they are all in for the game and clinic. Players from 1991 to 1993 will be eligible to play in the flag football game.

“Yes this will be a call out to any guys in the 1992 Wrecking Crew and really talking to the guys at GW we understand with our age we might not be able to get all the guys to play,” Sutphin said. ”So what we did, we tried to do 25 players but we stretched it to guys from ’91-’93. A little flex in the years but still all within the 30 years of us playing each other.

“On our end we’ve already got GW … They’re sending messages and text. They’ve clued a couple guys in and they say they are excited to come down and be a part of this.”

Sutphin said anyone wanting more information about the event or wanting to support event can reach him via email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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