Is the spirit being sucked out of the student section?

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Is the spirit being sucked out of the student section?

Khushi Patel and Elle Dawson

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Friday night football at Canfield High School is filled with band music, screaming fans, and a big student section. Within the past couple of years, the dynamic of the student section has changed. 

The administration installed a new set of bleachers specifically for the student body to sit during games. The setup of the stands makes it hard for the student section to be a cohesive group. 

At the first home game against Dover, the student section created some drama. There were fights, no cheering by the underclassmen, and things being thrown around. There were complaints after the game that sparked conversation and the idea that the student section needs to change its ways. 

The following week at the McKinley game, there was less drama, but – arguably – less fun.

About the difference between the two games, sophomore Luke Dietz said, “We didn’t have a speaker, so that made it boring, and we couldn’t say anything to the freshmen. It was boring compared to the Dover game.”

The administration banned the senior leaders from bringing a speaker to play music at the game. It was said to detract from the performance of the Canfield marching band.

Senior Jake Kowal said, “We used the music to unite all of the students. The underclassmen wouldn’t cheer, but they would sing. We want to get the whole student section to erupt in cheers, so we can show everyone what it means to have pride in our team.”

As a Canfield tradition, upperclassmen in the student section “poke fun” at the freshman, but this year the freshmen took it to heart.

Freshman Parker Wilkins said, “When the seniors just yell, it puts me in a bad mood, and makes me not want to cheer.” 

At the Dover Game, seniors led the normal “Go home, freshmen!” cheer, but with backlash. So at the McKinley game, the leaders were more mellow and didn’t start as many cheers, especially ones that were targeted toward freshmen. 

Wilkins said, “The first home game was crazy, a lot was targeted at the freshmen, but at the second game, seniors were afraid to say anything to the freshman.”

The hope is that during future games, seniors can create a happy medium between chaos and boredom.