■ Editor’s Note: This is the fifth in a 10-part series looking back at the biggest athletic stories at Marshall High School during the 2018-19 school year.
It had been a dozen years since Marshall’s football team had won an outright district championship until 2017 when the Mavericks swept through district play, making then head coach Claude Mathis the first head coach to win district in his first year with the program.
A year later, the Mavericks repeated as district champs, sweeping district for the second straight year and leaving Mathis undefeated against district opponents in his time as the Marshall head coach.
The Mavericks officially clinched their second straight district championship with a 37-13 win at home in a week 10 matchup over Whitehouse on Nov. 2.
“It finally did this morning,” Mathis said the following day when asked if it had hit him that his Mavs were back-to-back state champions. “It hit me this morning because people were telling me, “’Claude, that’s two years in a row that you went undefeated in district and outright district champs.’” Heck the JV is already district champs and the eighth grade has a chance to be district champs so just being outright district champs is finally sinking in but there’s one more game left to complete everything.”
The following week saw the Mavericks defeat the Pine Tree Pirates in a 48-24 final to complete their second-straight district sweep.