By Jason Elmquist
OKLAHOMA CITY —
Generations from now, residents of the small town of Glencoe will still know the Lazenby name like it was one of their own family members.
And it’s because this generation of Jake and Ty Lazenby had a dream when they were small boys and their father John Lazenby drove them nearly two hours up I-44 from around Chattanooga to watch state tournaments at The Big House.
Saturday’s moment was nearly 30 years in the making for the elder Lazenby, who has been in the coaching profession for 26 years. His first state championship came a year ago with his Panthers playing the underdog role and upsetting Weleetka for Glencoe’s second state title — the first coming in 2006 while in Class B.
But winning just one wasn’t enough for the Lazenbys.
“Since we were 3 or 4 years old, dad would always have us here in the stands asking if we were going to play here,” said Jake, a senior on the squad. “We always told him we were going to play here and win four gold balls, and we got half of them, so I’m pretty happy right now.”
With the final seconds winding down Saturday on Glencoe’s perfect season — the only boys team in the state of Oklahoma to claim that honor this year — coach Lazenby pulled his starters and let his bench players get a chance to put the final touch on the 29-0 campaign.
It was strange not seeing a single Lazenby on the court as the final buzzer approached. But with Glencoe up by 15 points, coach Lazenby not only gave those dedicated bench players a lasting memory, but he got to create one with his boys.
The Glencoe coach hugged his sons — as well as the other starters — as they walked to the bench to enjoy the fruits of the labor from the sideline. He again embraced both his sons while Glencoe was waiting for the presentation of its second straight gold ball trophy.
With winning gold ball No. 2, not only did this team make school history, but the Panthers became just the second program in the past 20 years to win back-to-back Class A titles — Frontier did it twice, with a back-to-back in 1996-97 and a three-peat from 2004-06.
“I told them today, last year’s team was just the second team at Glencoe to win it, which was big and they made history. But I told them, win today and you become legends in Glencoe — the first team to win it back-to-back,” Coach Lazenby said. “And I’ll tell you, we’re going to be pretty dang good next year, too.”
With leading scorer Ty Lazenby coming back, Glencoe could become just the second Class A team to win three straight. And further cement the Lazenby legacy in Glencoe.
Jason Elmquist is sports editor of The Stillwater News Press. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.