The high school football season begins this week so I figured I’d take a break from hurricanes for a few weeks to look into the early years of football at Goose Creek; what was and what could have been.
Football came to the Tri-Cities in 1920 when a group of boys attending school at the old YMCA building, located on the southeast corner of Pierce and Jones, decided that Goose Creek should have a team. So, they went to the banks and businessmen and raised $400, with pharmacist Garrett Herring being the largest contributor. Since the school was in the city of Goose Creek, they called themselves the Ganders. They held practice on a vacant lot next to the school and Ervin Flowers was elected captain with the team rounded out by Bill Kellogg, J.D. Wise, Cecil and Giles Henderson, Arthur Hill, Brown Magness, Jesse Roberts, Douglas Mackey, Geno King, Bill Dillenback, and Percy Portis. Their home field, Pruett Park, was located on the Pruett ranch where Rundell Hall at Lee College sits today, and contrary to my title, they didn’t have lights and they usually played on Saturday afternoons. Harrisburg High School was their first opponent and Coach Hughy Johnson’s boys lost the first game against Harrisburg by a score of either 110-0 or 96-0 depending on who you listen to. They also lost to Humble once and LaPorte twice by six points in both games. Then they travelled all the way to Texas City so they could get beat 63-0. They wound up losing all their games in 1920 and 1921.