Every year, there is one week when a school comes together like never before: the rivalry game.
Students plan a game theme and crowd cheers to do.
Cheer and yell leaders practice stunts and chants.
Parents and faculty plan the tailgate parties.
Coaches analyze the rival team's film, plan their plays, and work the players.
Players, though, have by far the most work to do. They practice long and hard. They prepare themselves mentally. They get themselves pumped up. They have to make sure they are in top mental and physical shape before that Friday night.
During the game, everybody has a job. And when everybody performs their job, the team wins.
Players play the game.
Coaches coach the players.
Cheer and yell leaders lead the fans.
Fans support the players through thick and thin.
As a photographer, I document these jobs and how they're performed. When one job isn't performed well, it reflects on every other job.
When the leaders don't lead, the fans are sloppy, which seems to damage the mentality of the players, which makes them play badly, which makes the coaches angry.
Tonight, against our rival, everyone did their job. So why didn't we win?
I think it's because everyone at Bishop Carroll also did their jobs well, but they did them just a little bit better. That doesn't make them the better football players though.
Who wanted the win more?
Who tried harder to win?
I can say that I've never seen some of our boys play harder than they played tonight. That's something to be proud of. We have some real men on our team. Those are the ones who respect themselves and the opponents enough to work as hard as they can for a win, but still accept a loss.
They've beat us for 13 years now. It's a shame that we couldn't beat them our senior year, but that's going to happen. Someone's gotta lose every game. We may have lost this one, but I have faith that we won in our own sorts.
That makes a damn good football game.
Our Lady of Victory, Pray for Us!
Fr. Kapaun, Pray for Us!
And lastly, Go Crusaders!