The Starkville Cowboys 7-8 and 9-10 age groups may have won the Powerhouse Super Bowl.
For coach Rodney Johnson, it was more than just winning a championship last Sunday.
He was proud to see the growth of his teams during the course of the season.
"None of my coaches or me get a cent from this," Johnson said. "It's all strictly volunteer. You see kids grow from some that were half timid or some of them scared to tackle, and before the end, they are all-stars and that was so rewarding."
The 9-10 Cowboys shut out the Macon Broncos 24-0, while the 7-8 Cowboys edged the Starkville Saints 12-6 in overtime.
Saints coach and Powerhouse league spokesman Fred Tate said both teams left everything out on the field in a game that lasted two hours and 15 minutes.
"The game was great and it was a struggle with the No. 1 defense against the No. 1 offense," Tate said. "It was scoreless at halftime, 6-6 in third quarter, 6-6 in the fourth quarter. In overtime, the Cowboys made that play.
"On both sides, the kids were just wore out. They were sick and hurting. I was down to my third string in overtime, and didn't know this was going on the Cowboys side too. They were running out of players too. We had offensive linemen playing at cornerback."
The atmosphere may have been enough for the players to give that extra effort.
The Powerhouse Super Bowls were played on the campus of East Mississippi Community College in Scooba. Sullivan Stadium provided quite a backdrop for the action.
"We really enjoyed it," Johnson said. "It felt like a real Super Bowl Sunday. It was different. The kids had never played on turf before and got to see themselves on the jumbotron. It was a great experience."
In the 11-12 age bracket, the Starkville Raiders lost an 8-6 decision to the Louisville Chiefs.
Both Cowboys teams now play for the State championship on Saturday against Vicksburg. The 7-8 game takes place at 2 p.m. and the 9-10 outing starts at 3 p.m.