Instead of practicing drills on the field or running through the playbook the day before Holy Trinity’s first ever playoff game, the football team spent Friday morning trying on new clothes…Well, sort of.
Instead the team was standing outside the school garage trying on new football equipment. The day before their first playoff game a few criminals set fire to their field house in the middle of the night and destroyed everything that was locked inside.
This happened at 2AM on Friday, their playoff game was 1PM on Saturday.
They were preparing to play against Hoosic Valley high school in the New York Section II Class C playoff game. But before the boys could get too fired up about the huge loss, other local high schools and colleges such as University at Albany, Union College, RPI, and Schenectady High School quickly came to the rescue.
They provided cleats, pads, girdles, and even jerseys to the Holy Trinity football team. The team was recently formed as a trio of players from Bishop Gibbons, Spa Catholic in Saratoga Springs and Catholic Central in Troy. All of whom were too small to be eligible on their own.
“Oh, we’re playing,” vowed head coach John Barber. “We may look like a bunch of hooligans but we’ll be padded up and ready to go,” the coach said through tears.
Coach Barber built the locker room by hand.
The school also set up a GoFundMe page for the football program so anyone could give money online, and it definitely worked. The fund has already raised (as of 11AM Oct 25) $21,775, with an end goal of 100K.
So long story short, by the next day, they had plenty of equipment to play in the anticipated game. Can only imagine how inspirational and emotional that coach’s speech in the locker room was?
Instead of wearing their school colors of burgundy and gold like they always had, the boys on the Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons School team ran out on the field sporting a different look: purple, gold and white jerseys with UAlbany written across the front. UAlbany even had to get a waiver signed from the NCAA to do this since providing branded equipment to high schoolers is considered an illegal tactic of recruitment.
When they took the field at 1PM, they may have looked like the lineup from the Little Giants, but with a closer look, you could see the players wearing stickers on the side of their helmets with the team’s nickname, “Pride.”
Win or lose, after everything that happened throughout the weekend, they certainly had something to be proud of…Which is good because they lost. Badly. 46-12.
It would have been quite the underdog story, but hey, at least they still have their pride.
An investigation is underway as to who started the fire.
For more stuff to talk about: