Wednesday night lights
Homecoming week nighttime activities saved by the senior class.
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As the golden sun sunk behind the dark shadows of the trees, a swarm of black, orange, and pink flooded the track outside of the school as teams arrived for a nighttime flag football game.
The referee yelled loudly, kicking off the first of a series of games as two teams, one donned in black and the other in orange charged at each other, ball in hand, pushing past each other as the sound of pom-poms and shouting fills the air, followed by the rip of velcro and another whistle signifying a first down.
On Wednesday, October 5th, all the students of Biddeford High School were invited to participate in a flag football game put on by the class of 2017. After plans for an Anything Goes event fell through, the class of 2017 stepped up to the plate to put on an event in its place. As she looked proudly over her successful event, senior class president Tiffany Curro watched the events unfold in front of her.
“I’m really happy that people wanted to participate in this event,” said Curro. “I think [flag football] was worth it, everyone seems so excited to be here and having fun.”
The referee yelled again, as Curro looked back at how quickly the event came together, from the announcement of Anything Goes being cancelled to the actual event.
“Honestly it only took me about four hours to plan,” said Curro. “I started last Wednesday night around four-o’clock and I was pretty much done all of the planning at eight.”
The first game finalized and the team rushed off of the field, the next two teams flooded the field in their place. Meanwhile, sophomore and student council secretary Ethan Paquet recounted the beginning of the flag football event, especially as a replacement for the cancelled Anything Goes event.
“This is a great turnout, and they seem to be enjoying themselves just as much as they would have at Anything Goes,” said Paquet. “We are very lucky that Tiffany stepped up to the plate and scheduled this event when Anything Goes was cancelled, and [the game] seems like an overall success.”
Curro agreed with Paquet, believing that her event was a very successful one as she stared off at the ongoing game.
“I think that flag football is an awesome replacement for Anything Goes,” said Curro. “Homecoming week is pretty much all about football, and I think this is really exciting because it is new, you get to come on with a big team, and of course, it’s football!”
The cheering on the sidelines rose with another touchdown as the actual football players arrived on scene. Senior football player Nick Scavuzzo seemed slightly disappointed with the event, even with a big smile on his face.
“I was pretty upset when I found out we [the football players] weren’t allowed to play,” said Scavuzzo. “But, there are really quite a few different teams here, like soccer and volleyball, so seeing all of the people that don’t play the game itself having fun and enjoying the sport, I think it’s pretty great.”
Standing next to him, fellow football player and senior Nick Gallant seemed pleased with the event as he cheered for the teams on the field.
“I think it is a little cheap that [football’s] kicker can go out and play with the soccer team,” Gallant said.
As the referee yelled, signifying the end of the second game, the next two teams took to the fields while class of 2017 advisor Victoria Salo watched, proud of what her officers accomplished in such little time.
“So with homecoming week, we have a lot of things happening that are splitting the classes in competition, so we just wanted an event that brought students of all grades together,” Salo said.
Salo mentioned that the best part of the flag football event was that there were no points tied to it, making it less a part of homecoming and more for students to simply have fun.
“No points, so no pressure, and we still had a great turnout,” said Salo. “There are six teams here, plus adults and students just spectating, and even some football players came as cheerleaders.”
Salo added that points appear to be the driving factor for all of the competition during Homecoming week and that without the points the dynamic had changed.
“I think that during the week, it is stressful thinking about the points, especially as seniors, so I think it is good for everyone,” said Salo. “Nobody has to care about points or winning for their class, they just have to worry about having a good time.”
Despite the positivity Salo shed about there not being any points, Curro disagreed to an extent, believing it to be the one part that people may not like.
“People are disappointed about not getting homecoming points, but I don’t think it’s too much of a problem,” said Curro. “Without homecoming points, it allows teams to be made up of all the different classes, so instead of being a gigantic competition for points, it can just be a fun competition against all groups of friends.”
However, Student Council Vice President Jacob Bilsky, agreed with Salo about the lack of points not affecting the game itself.
“Student Council has offered many opportunities to earn points this homecoming week,” said Bilsky. “So I think it is actually better as it is bringing people together in a competitive, but also fun, challenge that isn’t for class points, but instead is for nothing but the enjoyment of a good old game of flag football.”
As the referee ended the final game, the winning team jumped for glee. Captain, senior Caleb Ball, began an “I Believe” chant followed by the rest of his team. Ball, with sweat pouring off his forehead, celebrated his team’s ability to win the game.
“It feels great to go out with the boys and get the W, we all worked pretty hard,” Ball said.
Ball high-fived his teammates as the field began to empty. Standing proudly, he announced the flag football event was, to him, a success.
“By playing this game, I think that people that really don’t get to experience football are able to get a feel for the sport which I think will boost the excitement for Friday night.”
With the success of the event, Curro stood on the track, watched as everyone left the field and seemed at peace now that the event has wrapped up.
“I am a really sentimental and sensitive person, so when I came to the field, and saw all of these people here ready to have a good time, I was so happy it almost made me cry.”