National Championship Team Volunteers In Hancock County - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

National Championship Team Volunteers In Hancock County

Volunteers team up to build a better life for people in Hancock County. And you won't find a group any better at coming together as a team to achieve great things than the Division Two National Champion Grand Valley State Lakers from Allendale, Michigan.

Center Billy Eisenhardt is used to seeing these guys work together to exceed all expectations.

"We had a great season," says Eisenhardt. "We were undefeated again and won our second consecutive national championship."

Now, about 50 members of the best Division Two football team in the nation are in Hancock County, building a new home for Ray Necaise.  

"Thank goodness we've got people like this in the area and in the county to come along and do things like this," says Necaise. 

Players and coaches for Grand Valley State University are working with Camp Coastal in Hancock County, in an effort to build 150 homes before the end of the year.  

"It's a big deal for someone to take time out of their weeks or months if they come down here long term," says Volunteer Coordinator Ali Blanchard. "It's good to get them out here and working and telling people back home, 'That there's still a lot to be done, so come on down and help out.'"

The work they're putting in is not unlike the two-a-day practices they endure while tuning up for another championship run.  

"Whoof, I think it's pretty close," says Eisenhardt. "There's a lot more running in two-a-days, but this is manual labor, so it's up there."

But it's well worth the effort for these guys who say this experience is teaching them new lessons about winning and losing.  

"We figured as a team it would be something good for us to just give back to so many people who lost so much," says Eisenhardt. "They're down here two years later struggling to rebuild everything, so we thought we'd lend them a hand."

And that, for Ray Necaise, makes these guys winners on and off the field.  

"I'm going to root for them," says Necaise. "Yeah, I'll definitely root for them."

by Don Culpepper

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