Community foots the bill for Timberwolves’ Super Six trip
HUNTINGTON — The road to Wheeling was long for the Spring Valley High School football team. The Timberwolves finished undefeated in the regular season and won three convincing playoff games over Spring Mills, Huntington High and Capital to earn a spot in the Class AAA Football State Championship against Martinsburg for a third consecutive year.
Having made the trip twice before, the Timberwolves had an idea of what to expect entering the weekend — including the price tag that accompanied it.
The West Virginia Secondary Schools Activities Commission pays for a portion of the travel cost for teams participating in the Super Six, which consists of three championship games for Classes A, AA, and AAA. Teams must factor in travel, food and various other expenditures in order to make the weekend go off without a hitch.
According to Spring Valley Assistant Coach Tim George, the weekend trip to Wheeling came at a cost greater than $15,000 in order to make the weekend comfortable for 106 players, as well as the coaching staff.
George said the Super Six committee pays for up to 15 hotel rooms for the weekend, accommodating up to 60 people.
“We’ve got some big guys on our team so that wasn’t really going to work,” George said. “All three years we’ve tried to make the trip as easy as we can on our athletes, so that means starters sleep two to a room and we go from there.”
George said the team also rented a fleet of three charter buses instead of traditional school buses, which further increased the cost of the trip. In order to make the journey a reality, the Wolves needed some help from the community — and that’s exactly what they got.
One donor, the Ceredo-Kenova Rotary Club, presented SVHS standout Graeson Malashevich with a $300 check to go toward funding the trip.
“Our Rotary Club is a small club, but we try to help locally when we can,” Club President David G. Amos said in an email to the Herald-Dispatch. “We voted to help offset some of the cost since this does not come around every year. SVHS has been fortunate enough to go to state the last three years and hopefully they will be able to continue to do so in the future.”
The entire trip, according to George, was funded through private donations from individuals and businesses alike. He praised the community for footing such a large bill in just a few days.
“To pull that much together in such a short amount of time speaks a lot to the community around us,” George said. “Our team has kind of adopted the slogan ‘better together’ and I don’t think it’s ever been more true of our football team and our community.”