After waiting over two months upon winning the GHSA Class AA tennis state championship title, the Jackets tennis team was presented with their rings Friday night.

The Rockmart High School boys tennis team defeated Early County by a tight 3-2 score in May to win the state championship and was awarded with their state rings during halftime of Friday’s home scrimmage football game.

The rings were paid for by parents and community sponsors and through fundraisers hosted by the team.

“It means a lot, it’s a big accomplishment for the kids,” Head Coach Barry Owen said. “It’s something they’ve been dreaming about and have worked hard for since middle school.”

“I’m proud to have them all of them back here together again,” Owen said. “More proud of them now than I was at the end of the season,” he added.

Owen added that it was particularly special to have the five Class of 2019 seniors back for the ceremony.

Owen has been with the group since they were in sixth and seventh grade, so they are ones that will certainly be missed.

“They worked really hard and showed dedication and competitiveness, which is why I think we won the state championship,” Owen said.

He mentioned that in preparation for the upcoming season, the team will have lost five of the seven starters, adding that they will have their work cut out for them. He said there are several players who improved last year, and he hopes they will step up and fill the open roles.

One of the Class of 2019 graduates, Bennett Vest, spoke about the importance of the ceremony to him and how he is looking forward to seeing great things from the Rockmart team in the coming years.

“Our legacy is done and it’s time for the next generation to step up,” Vest said.