CLINTON TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- The Lackawanna Trail Lions made a historic trip to Hershey on Thursday, but the football team from near Factoryville came up short.
Despite losing the state title game to Farrell High School from western Pennsylvania, these Lions had their entire community rallying around their title run this season. That community showed up in full force to welcome them home Thursday night.
The sirens and cheers could be heard throughout the Factoryville area as hundreds of people gathered to welcome home the Lackawanna Trail Football Team from Hershey.
"We can't thank the community enough, I mean coming back from a hard-fought game to see everyone showing up. It means the world to us and it's hard to put into words," said Jordan Edwards the Lackawanna Trail Senior Running Back. "Words cannot even describe it, I mean right now I'm speechless."
This marked the first time a Lackawanna Trail football team has made it to the state championship game. The Lions came up short, finishing as state runner-up. But to their fans, families, and friends, their accomplishments this season, won't soon be forgotten.
"It was a record-breaking year, 14 wins, never happened before at Trail," said John Rolka the parent of a football player. "And to go to a state final, it's just unbelievable. And again, what it's done for the school and the community and the future of the program is just fantastic."
Many in this community, made the trip to Chocolate Town USA. And for those who stayed behind, they made sure these athletes received quite the greeting when they arrived home.
With the help of a fire and police escort, it's sure to be a homecoming and a season this team will always remember.
"Although we didn't win, we still put on one heck of a show, and it was a fun run, and we couldn't have done it without the community and our families and everyone here supporting us," added Edwards.