The 1949 SCHS Wildcat football team, while lacking some of the size of earlier teams and much smaller than later teams that carried the banner, had a quickness and hard-hitting quality that led them to a 7-1-1 record. The 1949 team, tied 7-7 by Lawrenceville in the season opener, gained a Co-Championship of the North Egypt Conference with Lawrenceville with a 5-0-1 1eague record.

The 1949 team, with three membersĀ· Bob Bishop, Charles “Bud” Parker and Bill Spratt, previously inducted into the Salem High Sports Hall of Fame, were involved in close games all through their schedule. Only a 25-0 win over Bridgeport, following the tie with Lawrenceville, and a 26-7 victory over Fairfield could be considered “cake walks.”

The Wildcats, coached by Kenny Farrar, also a past Hall of Fame inductee, skipped by Flora, 14-7, on the strength of a pass from jack Finks to Bill Howard, described as a “finger-tip catch that turned a possible 10-15 yard gain” into a 64-yard touchdown play, “with some sensational open field running by Howard.” Against Fairfield the next week, Salem, scored just 25 seconds into the game on their way to the 26-7 win.

After a 12-7 win over Mt Carmel, the Wildcats slugged and sloshed out a 6-0 win over Centralia with sophomore Bill Spratt going 24 yards in the rain and mud for the touchdown. In a close ball game at Olney, Salem scored seven points in the first quarter and broke open a tight game with 14 points in the third quarter for a 21-6 victory.

Salem closed the season with a 28-20 win over Mt Vernon as a tenacious defense kept the Rams pushed back late In the game. Spratt had his biggest game pf the year, rushing for 147 yards. Only Mt Vernon and Benton, with john Bauer punching Into the line, scored more than one touchdown against the Wildcats. Benton handed Salem its only loss, 24-21.

In addition to the aforementioned Parker and Bishop, players who put up a strong defensive front for the Wildcats were Bill Howard, Fred Johnson, Sam Balden, Frank Lee, Earl justice, Tom Newport, AI Spratt, Rex Holler and Roy Shoemaker. Backs who engineered some of the offense, in addition to Finks at quarterback and Spratt, were Ted Lee, Bob Morris, Randy Kirne, Diet Garden and Ellis Sanders.

Bishop, Holler and Finks were selected to the North Egypt Conference All-Star Team, selected by the sportswriters around the conference, with B. Spratt, and justice named to the second team.