2021 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Representative Bennett

House Resolution 78


     WHEREAS, the Long Beach High School Bearcats Boys Soccer Team finished the 2020-2021 season with its first state title in the school's history when they reigned victorious at the Mississippi High School Activities Association (MHSAA) Class 5A Boys Soccer State Championship, after trumping the Center Hill High School Mustangs in a 3-1 score; and

     WHEREAS, after making three consecutive runners-up finishes, the Bearcats' fourth straight state championship tournament appearance proved to be the charm, as the team wielded its exceptionally powerful strike to pierce through the state championship dreams of each of their opponents in the state playoffs; and

     WHEREAS, playing with clear eyes, full hearts and unimaginable amounts of strength, on February 6, 2021, at Madison Central High School, the Bearcats Soccer Team outlasted, outplayed and ultimately overpowered the Mustangs after jumping to an early lead after senior forward Carlos Torres scored the first goal in the 37th minute, followed by Ethan Myers' knock through in the 29th minute, and the firm defense of goalkeeper Justin Rolison, which cemented the team's 2-0 halftime lead; and

     WHEREAS, not wanting to allow their opponents any leeway in a direct path to the soccer box, the Bearcats' focus forged a stacking defense as its primary purpose during the second half, before Torres, in a breakout play, tore through the Mustangs' defense with 9 minutes remaining to score the Bearcats' final goal and seal its claim as victors and the rightful inheritors of the school's first golden soccer trophy; and

     WHEREAS, as many veterans of the game have said, "Defense wins championships," this age-old saying defined the immaculate strategy and skill of the Bearcats defense, whose grit, fortitude and determination erected a stone wall that helped secure the championship victory, and the dedication and athletic prowess of the offensive players helped them become game changers during the championship match, ensuring the revered title crown would find a new home on the mantle of the Long Beach Bearcats trophy case; and

     WHEREAS, throughout their season of play, the Long Beach High School Boys Soccer Team, who are bursting with grit and athleticism, faced off with some of the state's best contenders on the pitch, but persevered, despite obstacles due to COVID-19, to finish their season with an 11-2-1 record, making their presence and talent known as the gladiators and invincible champions of MHSAA boys' soccer; and

     WHEREAS, the 2020-2021 Bearcats Soccer Team statistics were impressive, and there were outstanding headers, strikes, penalty kicks and goals by individual players, but the key to this team's consistent success has been the constant team atmosphere and year-round hard work; and

     WHEREAS, the Long Beach High School Boys Soccer Team is comprised of very talented and distinguished young gentlemen, including:  seniors, Joshua Bonds, Simon Nguyen, Noah Shockley, Dylan Stephens, Kevin Tremino and Stanley Trzaska; juniors, Aiden Hines, Leo Maldonado, Caleb McKnab, Nathaniel Mink, Johnny Pham, Justin Rolison and Carlos Torres; sophomores, Gregory Desir, Brandon Griffith and Will Long; and freshmen, Blake Anderson, Joseph Chappel, Corbin Dixson, Alexander Eleuterius, Victor Hilensky, Dylan Kippes, Ethan LaBorde, Sawyer Levenson, Conner McNab, Liam Sartin, Max Torres and Mason Willis; and

     WHEREAS, the Bearcats have been superbly coached and inspired by Head Coach Andee Wilburn, who has broadened the Bearcats' knowledge of the game and refined their skills in execution; and

     WHEREAS, Coach Wilburn continues to build upon the legacy of superior play and true sportsmanship forged by the tenacious and undaunted spirit of each team member, as evidenced in their ability to produce high caliber players and plays and the team's successful season; and

     WHEREAS, it is the policy of the House of Representatives to recognize and commend the superb accomplishments of Mississippi student-athletes, especially those such as the Long Beach High School Bearcats Boys Soccer Team, whose excellence on the field and in the classroom brings honor to their school, their community and the State of Mississippi:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, That we do hereby commend and congratulate the 2020-2021 Long Beach High School Bearcats Boys Soccer Team and Head Coach Andee Wilburn upon winning their first Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 5A Boys Soccer State Championship and extend best wishes to the team and coach for continued success in all of their future athletic and academic endeavors.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be furnished to Head Coach Andee Wilburn, Long Beach High School and to the members of the Capitol Press Corps.