GARNER, N.C. – Heavy equipment uproots trees and moves dirt and rock at Garner Senior High School.
“It’s going to be chaotic,” said Trojans star defensive end Matthew Butler.
The only high school Butler has ever known is being demolished. For the next two years, Garner students will be diverted to brand new South Garner High School.
Yet while the school is being razed, venerable Trojans Stadium will remain. The venue, though, will be silent until 2018.
“Right now we’re still one town and one school,” Butler said. “There’s no way that chaos is going to diminish anything.”
For more than three decades Trojans Stadium has been a fixture in the Garner community. Many of the current Trojan’s played Pop Warner there on Saturday mornings.
“I’ve been playing here since I was really young,” said Trojans running back Collin Eaddy. “My football roots run really deep out here.”
As do emotions. Friday night is a happening in Garner. Most of the town makes it a point to attend, even local celebrity Scotty McCreery.
“The football’s still going to be the same,” Eaddy pointed out. “The way we line up, the way we hike the football, the way we catch the ball nothings going to change. It’s still going to be football at the end of the day just at a different place.”
Garner head football coach Thurman Leach says he doesn’t know if the atmosphere at South Garner will match that of Trojans Stadium. He’ll know soon, though, while his teams old digs gets a vacation.
“It’s going to get a chance to rest for two years and then come back,” Leach said.