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Class 4A football: Clinton holds off Anadarko to win school's 16th state title

Garrison Mendoza quarterbacked Clinton to a 21-14 win over Anadarko in the Class 4A state championship game at Boone Pickens Stadium, the school's 16th state title.
by Scott Wright Modified: December 1, 2012 at 5:17 pm •  Published: December 1, 2012
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photo - Clinton celebrates the win over Anadarko during the Class 4A Oklahoma state championship football game between Anadarko and Clinton at Boone Pickens Stadium on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012, in Stillwater, Okla.   Photo by Chris Landsberger, The Oklahoman
Clinton celebrates the win over Anadarko during the Class 4A Oklahoma state championship football game between Anadarko and Clinton at Boone Pickens Stadium on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012, in Stillwater, Okla. Photo by Chris Landsberger, The Oklahoman

— Garrison Mendoza couldn't hold the tears back.

He has been waiting and watching and working too long for his chance to bring a gold ball to Clinton.

As his teammates hoisted the trophy on one side of him, and fans celebrated on the other side, Mendoza was overcome with emotion as he talked about days as a 6-year-old running around on the sidelines of Red Tornado practices, hoping he'd one day have the opportunity to be a part of history.

Saturday was that day. Mendoza quarterbacked Clinton to a 21-14 win over Anadarko in the Class 4A state championship game at Boone Pickens Stadium, the school's 16th state title.

“I've been dream ...” Mendoza paused, choking up as he tried to speak. “I've been dreaming about this for my whole life. My dad's a coach, and I've been out there with him since I was 6. I wanted a gold ball since then, man, I got it. I finally got it.”

His father, Lou Mendoza is a longtime assistant of head coach Mike Lee, who won his ninth state title — second-most in state history behind Jenks' Allan Trimble, who won his 10th Friday night.

“There's a lot of kids on this team who have been around this their whole life,” Lee said. “You always want to win, but I wanted them to win, wanted them to get that feeling, and it can't be any better than this.”

The win avenged a 28-21 regular-season loss to Anadarko, which Lee pointed to as a turning point in the season.

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by Scott Wright
Reporter
A lifelong resident of the Oklahoma City metro area, Scott Wright has been on The Oklahoman staff since 2005, covering a little bit of everything on the state's sports scene. He has been a beat writer for football and basketball at Oklahoma and...
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