Even during pandemic, school spirit is undefeated for Friday night football

(From left) Chaffee players Jackson Ketchum, Storm Boese, Jagger Sadler and Isaac Andrews react to their team getting closer to the end zone during a game at Scott City High School on Friday, Oct. 9, 2020. (Sarah Yenesel ~ sarahy@semissourian.com) Order this photo
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Saturday, November 14, 2020

The beginning of the high school football season was filled with uncertainty because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

In August, according to the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), Missouri was one of 14 states that did not significantly modify the season and planned to play a somewhat normal schedule for the 2020 prep football season.

The now completed regular season proved to come with challenges. Multiple games had to be canceled due to positive cases among students and staff, causing pauses for contact tracing and quarantine at schools such as Doniphan, Chaffee, Poplar Bluff, St. Vincent and Central High School.

Despite all the hardships, once it was okay to play, coaches, players, cheerleaders, marching band members and fans did more than show up to the games, they brought the spirit needed in these times.

While the game on the field looked the same, the sidelines looked different. At most schools, there were mask requirements, social distancing and reduced numbers, but there was still the same spirit for high school football at every game.

The sideline and crowd in the visitor bleachers reacts as Flint Guilliams runs down the field after a turnover during a game at Cape Central High School on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020.
Sarah Yenesel ~ sarahy@semissourian.com
The sun sets behind the bleachers at The Pit on Friday, Sept. 4, 2020.
St. Vincent students cheer on the sideline during a game at Perryville High School Friday, Sept. 25, 2020.
Sarah Yenesel ~ sarahy@semissourian.com
Students cheer on the Jackson Indians at a home game versus Hillsboro on Friday, Sept. 4, 2020.
Sarah Yenesel ~ sarahy@semissourian.com
Cape Central cheerleaders react after the Tigers gain about 50 yards during a game against Jackson on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020.
Sarah Yenesel ~ sarahy@semissourian.com
(From left) Assistant Coach Zach Lacy and Trent Lathum react to Mark Panagos gaining a significant amount of yards during a game against St. James at Scott City High School on Friday, Oct. 16, 2020.
Sarah Yenesel ~ sarahy@semissourian.com
Band members of the Cape Central Marching Tigers enter the field before a game at Cape Central High School on Friday, Nov. 2, 2020.
Sarah Yenesel ~ sarahy@semissourian.com