By John Fairless
In 1967, a 12 months after racial integration had began in rural Tennessee, trainer Jim Graves assembled his crew of avid gamers (white and black) and commenced a rare trip that lasted for 4 seasons. successful video games "one at a time" (as just about all coaches will let you know is the single approach you can), trainer Graves' Panther soccer workforce in Martin, Tennessee publish an ideal season (11-0) -- a rare-enough prevalence on its own.
The subsequent season, regardless of Graves' departure, a brand new trainer got here in and did a similar factor. eleven wins, no losses less than trainer James Dunn.
A 3rd season got here alongside, and the consequences have been an identical; the fourth yr of what eventually grew to become often called The Streak used to be exciting, chilling, nerve-wracking and fascinating -- for gamers and fanatics alike.
The indisputable fact that this soccer tale happens in the course of one of the most tumultuous occasions in American heritage offers a relentless subtext to the tale informed the following. Racial tensions have been operating excessive, specifically within the South, the place a few white humans weren't too satisfied approximately integration within the faculties and in public areas. (Not that each one black fogeys have been inevitably chuffed, either!)
The Vietnam warfare used to be a relentless burden at the nation's assets, with hundreds of thousands of yankee lives misplaced and hundreds of thousands extra younger males who have been by no means fairly an identical after they got here again from war.
Assassination was once a be aware that each citizen got here to grasp, all too good -- Martin Luther King, Jr. was once shot and killed in Memphis, Tennessee (about a hundred miles from the place our tale occurs) in 1968, later that 12 months through Senator Robert Kennedy, a candidate for President.
As writer John Fairless asks within the book's creation, "The global was once coming nearer each day, and it felt like a perilous position to be. With all of that happening, simply how very important may well a box target and a soccer online game be?"
It was once vital, certainly, for the higher than 10,000 voters accumulated on the neighborhood stadium on a chilly November evening while the "The Streak" used to be at the line and highly-ranked groups have been fighting it out.
Fairless writes: "I invite you to a time that's now suspended in reminiscence, separated from the truth of recent existence and our day-by-day grind -- but which continues to be as touchable and tangible because the thins we skilled in simple terms yesterday.
"Maybe -- for a few of us -- they're extra actual than that.
Maybe -- simply perhaps -- a kick ability greater than profitable or wasting a game."
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Extra info for 42-0: The Story of Four Extraordinary Seasons
42-0: The Story of Four Extraordinary Seasons by John Fairless