CAIRO, Ga. (WTXL) — On storefronts all across Cairo, you’ll see messages of support for the Syrupmaids basketball team. Though most in town will not be able to make the trip to Macon, this team knows, win or lose, they’ll come back home as champions within the community.
“And that’s what people are saying, win or lose coach we are just so proud of you all and what you represent and we told them that we appreciate them," says Cairo head girls basketball coach Daphne McClendon. "We’re going to go up there and we’re going to give it our very best shot.”
In a season where every game could’ve been their last, playing through a pandemic has actually strengthened this team’s bond. On and off the court this team is one big, loving family.
“I mean we’ve been playing with each other for a long time so it’s like we know how each other plays and we know how each other works," adds Cairo senior power forward Chambria Vicks.
“Because they know they can rely on each other and that if they make a mistake it’s ok. What’s important is that we keep working, keep working," McClendon added.
With or without a state title, the work these girls have put in this past season has sparked inspiration for the next generation to follow in their footsteps.
“I have kids, girls that have not said they were interested in basketball coming to find me. And saying coach I think I’m going to try out next year, said McClendon. "And you know that’s tremendous because we have a lot of athletes here at Cairo high school. So if we can get them in the gym we can certainly build a strong foundation and continue to look for that next championship.”
Cairo and Carver High High School tip-off Wednesday evening at 5 p.m. in the GHSA Class AAAA state championship game from Macon Coliseum.