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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

GHS football players battle hot sun, wings to victory

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Greencastle football team of (from left) T.J. Bollman, Tyler Scott, Tanner Wood and Zach Secrest won the inaugural Celebrate 4 Wing Eating Contest. [Order this photo]
The inaugural Celebrate 4 Wing Eating Contest ended in spectacular fashion. Trailing for much of the competition the Greencastle football players rode the flawless and speedy performances of Tanner Wood and and T.J. Bollman to victory.

Greencastle football organized the event, which was officiated by GHS head coach Josh Buis.

Five teams entered the competition, with the Greencastle Fire Department listed as the prohibitive favorite going in.

Teams of four had to eat 10 wings each, 40 total per team, with the first team to finish being named the winners.

The GFD lived up to its reputation early, cruising through the first two eaters with a slight lead over Team Chicken Hawks and nearly a full-eater lead ahead of the football players.

Midway through the competition, the football players were ahead of only the team of GHS assistant coaches.

That's when the "big boys" took over for the players, Wood said.

Skill position players Tyler Scott and Zach Secrest began the competition admirably, but still struggled.

They did just enough to give their team a chance, but the competition took off when Wood began eating.

From his first wing, Wood's aggression came out. He attacked, not just his wings, but also his competition. The team surged ahead, passing three teams and vaulting the players into first.

T.J. Bollman, eating cleanup for the players, ate with passion and battled through pain.

With the sun beating down and an excited crowd moving closer to the action, the heat of the wings was not the only thing making Bollman sweat.

He gutted it out until the last wing was ingested then, covered in hot sauce, rose in jubilation.

Despite their underdog status the football believed from the start that they had what it takes to win.

"We knew," Scott said. "There was no doubt in our minds."

The football coaches managed to come all the way back and finish second, followed by a disappointed squad from the fire department.

Team Awesome finished fourth and Team Chicken Hawk, despite their early success, fell apart and finished in last place.

All proceeds from the event will go to the Friends of the Park to help pay for next year's fireworks and Fourth of July celebration.

The wings were donated by the Greencastle Buffalo Wild Wings.