Thirteen years is a long time and it had been that long since Jamestown won a Section 6 football title. The drought came to an end last Saturday night at Ralph Wilson Stadium when the Red Raiders defeated Frontier, 42-7, in the Class AA title game.
It was also the first sectional title for Tom Langworthy in his sixth season as the Jamestown head coach.
When he took the position on Aug. 14, 2008, Langworthy became the 31st coach since the program began in 1893. He was also the youngest at the age of 27.
He didn't have much time to ponder those things because practice for the 2008 season was beginning in three days and there were only 22 days before the season opener.
At that time did Langworthy have a timetable for winning a Section 6 title?
''I didn't have a plan for a sectional championship,'' he said earlier this week. ''I felt like the program needed to get its pride back. We just wanted to win some football games. I just wanted us to play well, to play hard.''
Since 2000, the Red Raiders had compiled a 33-38 record and they were 2-6 and 1-7 in the two seasons before Langworthy took over.
Langworthy came to the Red Raiders accustomed to success. He had been a four-year starter at Southwestern and was a two-time division all-star and Post-Journal All-Star in his senior season. That season he was also chosen as the Division 5 defensive player of the year and was named to the Class B all-state first team. Then he played on the defensive line at Mercyhurst College and was a three-time all-academic selection.
When his playing career was over, Langworthy was a varsity assistant coach at Southwestern for two seasons under head coach Jay Sirianni and was part of the Trojans winning a sectional championship. Then he took a teaching position in Jamestown in 2006 and was a junior varsity assistant coach for Jim Painter before moving into the head coaching position.
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When Langworthy moved into the top spot there was no sudden turnaround as the Red Raiders were 4-5 in 2008 and 3-6 in 2009.
''Early on, there were some setbacks and some disappointments,'' he said. ''Coming into the situation I had a vision for what I wanted to do. I had some high goals, but some realistic ones and felt we could do it.''
But he knew patience was required.
''It takes time to change attitudes,'' Langworthy said. ''The first year I was happy we won four games.''
But he admitted, ''It bothered me we had a losing record through the whole offseason. Then the next season we had a losing record again. I actually thought the team was better the next year, but the record didn't indicate it. Then 2010 was when we turned the corner. We were 5-4 and won a playoff game and that was a big deal.''
It was a special team and that's why prior to playing for a sectional title last Saturday, Langworthy talked with the co-captains of that 2010 team - Eric Tyra and Joe Campion.
''Those guys (the entire 2010 team) laid the foundation,'' he said. ''They did the heavy lifting and they didn't get any of the glory. But they all knew when they were in the program that it was headed in the right direction. Because of that, some of these other kids get the reward.''
The rewards began the following season when Jamestown went 8-2 and lost in the Class AA title game and it was exactly the same in 2012.
After coming close for two straight years, the Red Raiders finally got over the hump with their win over Frontier. And the first sectional title in the sixth season under Langworthy.
''That's why I was so emotional on Saturday night,'' he said. ''That picture in the paper (of him holding up the title plaque) wasn't just for me. That was the culmination of countless hours by a lot of people and we're at the top of Western New York football. That sectional championship is back in Jamestown. It's a ton of people, players, coaches, parents, community members who have made a lot of sacrifices for that to happen. That moment was for everybody.''
Now the moment involves trying to win a Far West Regional game against Aquinas tonight. The last time Langworthy was involved in a far West Regional was in 2004 when he was an assistant coach at Southwestern.
''Those were fun times for me as a young coach with not a lot of responsibilities,'' he recalled. ''This is completely different. Now I'm the head of the program and have a ton of responsibilities.''
Some of the responsibilities are lessened thanks to assistant coaches Ryan Calkins, Richie Joly and Dave Munella, who had been with the program before Langworthy took over.
''We were all coaching in the same program,'' he said. ''We are around each other all the time. Before we started coaching together we were very good friends.''
And they are still good friends, along with assistants Mike Baker, Arrick Davis and John O'Brien.
So it appears Langworthy is in the right place at the right time.
''It's been a blessing to coach football in a community where football is taken so seriously and people really embrace it,'' he said. ''It's not like that everywhere and I understand that.''