Paetow High School football team competing in their first-ever 5A UIL Football State Championship

KATY, Texas – The Paetow High School Panthers will take on College Station tonight at AT&T Stadium in Texas’ 5-A Division I State Championship Football game. 

The Katy ISD school is only five years old.

Cheerleaders, members of the band and color guard, football players, coaches, and school administrators celebrated their success before they departed for Arlington Friday morning.

A pep rally in the gym, a parade through the halls and a final goodbye before they boarded the buses.

“I am extremely proud of our kids,” said BJ Gotte, Paetow High School’s head football coach.

Gotte led the team to a 14-1 season, a huge accomplishment for the school that’s as new as Paetow.

“Typically, when you open a new school, the people who lay the foundation don’t get to see the house finished sort of speak, we are not finished by any means, but for them to get to experience something like this early on is really neat.” he said.

Grace Woodard, is 17 and a junior at Paetow. She’s a cheerleader on the varsity squad.

“This is is really big for us, especially for all of us who have been doing this since we have been little.  It means a lot.  This is something unexplainable,” she said.

“Super proud of these guys, they have been together since 8th grade, this is an amazing accomplishment,” said Kimberly Johnsonm whose son is 18-year-old JJ Johnson.

“We started off at a small program nobody wanted to be at, and now we’re at a state championship.  It’s crazy to see how far we have come.” said senior and defensive-end player JJ Johnson.

Daymion Sanford is a junior. He’s an outside linebacker.

“I am excited, I am just going to chill right now, so I don’t lose my energy before the game,” he said.

Several buses with cheerleaders, members of the band, and school journalists left at 11:45 a.m. Additional buses with parents and fans left at 1:30 p.m.

Kick-off is at 7 p.m. against College Station.

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