Fans Back To The Stands



The crowds are large. The stands are packed. And the student section is rowdy. That can only mean one thing … STH football is back! It has been two years since the roaring chants and powerful sounds of the band have shaken the grounds of Granger Stadium, and what a tremendous impact this exciting environment has on our fighting Eagles as they begin their season with an impressive 4-2 record.
After the Needville game, starting middle linebacker Jack Ward expressed his experience with having the stands filled again.
“I’ve missed this…” claimed Ward, “nothing is better than hearing the crowd chant your name.”
Ward went on to be named the Texas Private School Defensive Player of the week, finishing the game with an astonishing 16 tackles, two of them being for a loss, and one pass break up. It is not only Ward who feels this way, as Zach Rocha, Ward’s partnering LB, shared a similar reflection on the return of the fans:
“Having everyone at the games makes me want to play more”, stated Rocha.
At the Catholic Bowl, Rocha led the Eagles with 16 tackles in the tight 31-38 victory against John Paul II. Currently, Rocha is not only leading the Eagles in number of tackles, but is also ranked 3rd overall for tackles in all of TAPPS, Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools, with an outstanding 69 tackles, averaging 11.5 tackles per game.
The STH Eagles are a State Championship program. And as all winners do, they play for the next game. They forget about the results of the previous week and focus on dominating their next opponent. While bearing the bruises and bumps from last week’s game, the players continue to undergo the long practices and draining morning workouts with hopes to be victorious the following Friday. So far, this hard work ethic has paid off as the Eagles began their season 2-0 for the first time in nearly a decade. With the fans back, ready to support, the Eagles now have one more thing to look forward to on game day.
“The players spend hours on end preparing for Friday night’s game,” Coach Davis, defensive coordinator of the Eagles, said. “And the presence of our family, friends, peers, teachers, alumni, and more,
sparks a sense of pride when wearing
the red and white.”
Not only is it the presence and energy of the fans that make the difference on the field but also their coordinated wardrobe plays a major factor. Each game holds a different theme, and thus far there has been Red Out, Hawaiian Luau, Jersey Night, and Western themes. Without a doubt, these themes bring about a sense of unity in all St. Thomas supporters. From the Eagle Guard to the dad’s grilling burgers, all Eagles are brought together by wearing the same outfits and cheering the same chants. This unity not only inspires the Eagles
to perform to their best abilities to make the fans proud, but it also serves as a great intimidation factor for the visiting team. Imagine having to walk into a deafening stadium, surrounded by waves of red and white, right after coming off of a long bus ride. As soon as the visitor gets off the bus, they know that they have already lost.
Of course, you can’t forget the mighty STH band. From the thundering sounds of the percussion to the soothing melodies of the woodwinds, the presence of the band brings a heightened intensity to Friday nights, and some may argue that the band becomes even more boisterous than the fans. Cameron Price, star wide receiver, fully agrees with this claim as his favorite part of Friday nights is “the drumline’s cadence during kickoffs because it escalates the excitement of the moment.” As of Week 5, with an unbelievable 760 receiving yards, 42 catches, and 6 touchdowns, Price holds the number 1 spot in TAPPS for receiving yards and the number 3 spot in all of Texas High School Football.
“The fans bring an entirely different source of energy and passion to the game.” states Price, “I live for the wild cheers of the fans because, without them, the game wouldn’t be the same.”
Having fans fill the stands again greatly impacts the production of the ST. Thomas football team and this is evident through their great start to the season. With the continued support from the fans, families, and alumni … who knows, the Eagles may be on the path to another Championship season.