Celebrating a championship: Allen collects hardware in front of 3,000-plus fans

ALLEN — Shane Tripucka’s football career in Allen goes all the way back to his days running laps around Ereckson Middle School.

Back then, he and his friends hoped to follow in the footsteps of the 2008 Allen team that won the school’s first state title.

In December, Tripucka, a senior and Allen’s starting punter, realized that dream when the Eagles beat Houston Lamar, 35-21, before a Cowboys Stadium crowd of 48,379 to win the Class 5A Division I state title.

More than a month later, the city of Allen is still showing its gratitude.

On Wednesday night, the city honored the Eagles with a celebration that drew more than 3,000 fans to the Allen Event Center.

“It was fun, being in eighth grade, to be able to watch them when they won. And it is awesome for us to come four years and win this one,” Tripucka said.

Allen, which finished 15-1, joined an elite group of nine schools to win multiple 5A titles since the classification was created in 1980.

“The best compliment I have ever gotten about this team is their character,” Allen coach Tom Westerberg told the crowd. “You cannot have a winning team without class and character like these guys have.

“This team may not have had the best athletes or the best athletic ability … but they are the true meaning of a team, and they played together a as team.”

The team was presented with three trophies during the ceremony: the Maxpreps coach of the year award, the Chevy Team Award and the UIL trophy.

Former Cowboys standout Randy White was in attendance and offered his congratulations to the players.

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