CLINTON TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- You could barely find a parking spot outside of Gin's Tavern near Factoryville on Thursday afternoon.
Inside, it was nearly standing room only as Lackawanna Trail fans packed the house for a watch party to cheer on their Lions in the Class A state championship.
For the first time in school history, the Lackawanna Trail football team was able to utter the words many players in Pennsylvania dream of someday saying, "Hershey, here we come!"
"It's unbelievable. A small school like us making it to the state playoffs. It's incredible," said Frank Ross, class of 1982.
One might say Lackawanna Trail fans had their eyes fixed on the big screens like a Lion hunting down its prey, as their beloved team took on Farrell in the single A state title game.
Gin's Tavern near Factoryville served as "The Lions Den" for the big game.
"It's been phenomenal," said co-owner Sandy Kostick. "The excitement that the community has been displaying for these kids is unbelievable. We're really, really proud of them. It goes to show you what a close-knit community and how supportive everybody is."
The Lions were able to draw first blood early in the first quarter, to take a 7 to 0 lead.
But powerhouse Farrell stormed back to win, 55 to 20. Either way, this historic run will be remembered forever here in Wyoming County.
"It's really made up of four little communities -- Fleetville, Factoryville, Dalton, and Nicholson. When something like this happens, it really pulls all four of them together," said Roy Davis, Lions coach from 1963 -1973.
"This was always my dream to get to Hershey. We never made it because we always ran into Southern Columbia. We had a good bunch of kids, one of the greatest experiences of my life coaching at Lackawanna Trail. A lot of hard-nosed kids, blue-collar workers. They were disciplined, great families, great community," said Frank Marciano, an assistant coach from 1999 – 2008.
Despite the defeat to Farrell, this goes down as the best football season in school history.