Harrison coach Al Melo said it best on the sideline just before getting drenched with a Gatorade shower.

“This has been a long time coming.”

Friday, in a 47-0 win over Mitchell, the Harrison Panthers clinched their first conference championship since 1989 and the program’s first undefeated regular season.

“This is great for the Harrison community,” Melo said. “And I’m just really proud of the way our kids work. We’re not the most talented in every part of the game, we have some talented kids, there’s not doubt about it, but they bring it to the table every single day.”

But for the Harrison senior class, which was honored before the game, clinching a perfect season has been on their mind for four years.