"It feels good," said senior offensive tackle and defensive end Cardon Malan. "We've earned it, I'd say. We've worked too hard not to be here.
"That was our goal, ultimately, that's what we wanted and that's what we all wanted to go out and win — a state championship. I believed that we would get this far. I always knew that we had the athletes for it and the team and the coaches, but I think a lot of people are kind of surprised that we made it this far. But I'm not."
Russ Jones, the only head coach the Titans' program has ever had, says his squad has been strong at overcoming any adversity that comes its way and at always staying focused on the task at hand.
"Being there in the semis last year helps us, I think," Jones said. "If you haven't been there before, I think you go down there and you lose focus, gawking around at the stands and everything's new, the territory's new, and it's a big stadium. So I'm sure just going down there once or twice before has helped us keep focused on what we're there for."
Coach Jones has confidence that his sophomore QB, with the help of playmakers like Mitchell and a stellar defensive unit that's allowed little more than 9 points per game, can get the job done.
"He's a tough kid," Jones said of Tracy, who took over in the second half of last week's game against Bingham, "and that'd be tough to do because he didn't take every rep in the first half.
"I think he's pretty relaxed and pretty confident right now with what's going on. Just the reps that we give him here in the next couple of days I think should help, too, get him up to the speed of the game.
"Our goal this season was to just try and win each week, and the ultimate goal is to win the region and state championship," Jones said. "But at the beginning of the year, that's kinda off in the distance quite a bit. ... Now, if we can just get 'er done."
And as far as Mitchell and the Titans are concerned, coming up short is simply not an option.
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