Let's pack the stands

Friday, November 7, 2003

Coach Jeff Gross wants to play to a packed house Monday. Let's do what we can to make it happen. Gross isn't just showing off.

He knows fan support could spell the difference as his McCook High School Bison try to get past the York Dukes once again.

It almost spelled the difference the last time they met.

Earlier this year, McCook, 10-0, had to go into overtime to defeat York, now 8-2, at York.

"When we played at York, it was a tough environment," Gross told Gazette sports editor John J. Mesh (see story, page 15). "It was standing room only -- they packed their house. We would like to pack our house."

York comes to town at 2 p.m. Monday in the second-round playoff game for Nebraska Class B.

As anyone who has experienced Nebraska football know -- or even McCook's state championship game last year in Memorial Stadium -- the "12th man" can be an important player in big football games.

And it really won't be much of a sacrifice. With temperatures expected to be in the 60s on Monday, long underwear and hot chocolate probably won't be needed.

What will be needed, however, are strong lungs -- artificial noise-makers aren't allowed -- and enthusiastic support for our team.

The same could be said for fans of Chase County, who play at Valentine on Monday, and Cambridge fans, who host North Platte St. Pats at 6:30 p.m. on Monday.

McCook High School will dismiss at noon Monday for the afternoon game, while younger students will be allowed to attend the game with their parents' permission.

If you're an employer, consider letting your workers having the afternoon off to root for their hometown team. When the going gets tough, it might just be the fans in the stands who make all the difference.

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