With the Russellville Panthers Football team heading to UK Healthcare Orthopaedic Surgery & Sports Medicine State Football Finals at Kroger Field in Lexington today, excitement, as well as pride, is swirling throughout Logan County.

According to head football coach Mikie Benton, the Russellville High School football program has three state championship titles (1980, 1983, and 1990). Russellville went to state in 1987 but lost to Pikeville 28-26, the school they will be playing Friday, Dec. 3 at 11 a.m.

Coach Benton says his team is ready and is “hungry” for the win, hoping to bring a fourth championship to the school.

For Russellville Superintendent Larry Begley, his pride for the players is overwhelming.

“These kids and coaches have no idea how they united an entire community. I couldn’t be more proud of these Panthers. This team has bought into what Coach Benton and his staff have challenged them with, and they have more than answered that challenge,” said Begley. “I am thankful that they have let me tag along in this journey. Go Panthers!!”

Russellville High school Principal Rex Booth says regardless of the outcome of Friday’s game, the players are winners.

“On behalf of everyone at Russellville High School, I want to wish our Panthers the best of luck as they take the field on Friday in hopes of bringing a state championship back to Russellville for the first time in 31 years,” said Booth. “Regardless of the outcome, I hope these young men realize how proud they have made not only this school but our entire community. They have carried themselves with class and represented the name on their jerseys with great pride this entire season. I can’t put into words how thankful I am for this team, as they have taken us all on the ride of a lifetime and I can’t wait to see them get the opportunity to live their dreams and make memories that will last a lifetime at Kroger Field on Friday. Go Big P! Bring it home!”

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