Lambert Football’s Record Breaking Season: “Expect to Win”


Lambert players and coaches celebrate a non-region win on Friday at Flowery Branch. Photo by Jay Rooney Photography.

Longhorn football has made history this year, breaking records and setting a new standard for Lambert High School.

Since the school opened in 2009, Lambert has never sustained a six-game winning streak. After dominating Forsyth Central 40-14 on October 7th, the Lambert gridders changed the narrative by starting the season 6-0. For the next three weeks, Lambert broke their new record by defeating West Forsyth (20-3), Denmark (39-31) and rival South Forsyth (31-13). Although the Longhorns ultimately lost a close game to Milton, Lambert finished second in 7A Region 6 and hosted a first-round playoff game for the first time since 2016. In that game, Lambert defeated Wheeler 45-14. On November 18th, Lambert concluded their record-setting season after a second-round loss to North Gwinnett.

 When Marc Beach joined the Lambert football coaching staff as an offensive coordinator three years ago, the Longhorns were reeling after a winless season. Beach was promoted to Head Coach by Drew Ferrer, Lambert’s Athletic Director, this past summer. 

“It was very clear that Marc was the right guy for the job and just a great fit for our overall athletic program, not just football,” Ferrer said.

In July, Lambert competed in the Corky Kell 7-on-7 Tournament. Amid the grueling Georgia heat, the Longhorns had a realization.

“We beat a lot of people, and I think then our guys felt like, ‘Hey, we’re not bad,'” Beach said. “They went out and competed, and they proved to themselves that they caa n win.”

Lambert’s impressive season is largely due to the team’s leadership. The senior class has had three head coaches and a year of COVID. Coach Beach and his staff offered stability this year, which has changed the team’s culture. 

“We developed the Leadership Council,” Beach explained. “I think what makes us special is the senior leadership that we’ve got.”

These leaders include senior quarterback James Tyre and senior safety Tommy Morris. They’ve experienced the program’s changes over the past four years. 

“Our coaching staff and who we’ve brought in has changed a lot,” Tyre said. “Through all of it, our freshmen team from four years ago has stuck together. We’ve bonded, and now we’re leading our team.”

With new leadership comes new offensive and defensive systems. Coach Beach changed Lambert’s offense resulting in record-setting point and yardage totals. 

“Last year, we were more run-oriented,” Beach said. “This year, we kind of let James be James and do his thing.”

Defensively, Lambert maintained the strategies that proved successful last season.

“This is the second year in a row that we’ve run the same defense,” Beach explained. “The guys knew schematically what we wanted, and that’s why we’ve been so successful on defense — they knew what we’re trying to do.”

“Last year, we put in a new defense that started working well, so this summer and offseason, we were just building on that,” Morris said. “So now we’ve seen a dramatic change in points allowed, and we’ve held offenses to fewer points that we didn’t do years before.”

Every sport presents its own challenges, but Lambert football faced a major one — not letting people’s perception of them influence their game. 

“It goes back to Collins Hill last year,” Beach said. “Our guys didn’t believe we had a shot. Nobody did.”

“No one believed in us,” Tyre explained. “We just had to stick through it and prove others wrong.”

Throughout this season, Coach Beach consistently emphasized a positive mindset. Since the day he took over, Beach wasn’t focused on changing how practice was run or how workouts were organized, but instead, he instilled in his players that they could win at everything they do.

“I asked them to do three things,” Beach said. “I asked them to play as hard as they can, I ask them to play with class, and I asked them to go into everything with the mentality ‘I will win.'”

The motto for Lambert football this year is “E to W,” or expect to win. Whether it’s a snap on the field or a test in the classroom, Beach wants his players to dominate whatever is in front of them.

“That’s half the battle with kids,” Beach said. “If they believe that they can win, and if they believe what you tell them. I think that’s why we were fortunate enough to be as successful as we were.”

This season Lambert beat Denmark for the first time in two years, and they defeated West Forsyth and South Forsyth for the first time in five years. 

“We have a saying that every week, we focus on that game for that week,” Morris said. “Just trying to win that game. Then, we move on to the next.”

Lambert’s success this football season has contributed to esprit de corps within the school. 

“Football is what the community is surrounded by,” Morris said. “If you’re not winning, it’s not a lot of fun for the community. But when you’re winning, it brings the school together.”

This season has united Lambert’s myriad facets for a common goal: supporting the football team. 

“There’s not one player that’s gotten us to where we’re at,” Beach explained. “It’s taken the administration, the coaches, the parents and the players in the school backing us to get us where we’re at.”

To ensure sustained excellence, Coach Beach is focused on developing new leaders and maintaining the attitude he has had with the team thus far. 

“There’s got to be a new development of leadership for the next year,” Beach said. “That is what we’ll work on in the offseason. We’ve got some really good young guys that are learning from the older guys, and I think that’s going to carry us and continue to build what we’ve already built.”

This 2022-23 Lambert football season has been unforgettable. From highlight reel plays to crowded student sections, this year has made history at Lambert High School and is a dream season for the Seniors.

“Obviously, winning is great stuff,” Morris said. “But these guys are my family. The thing I’m going to remember the most is the bond I’ve had with them.”