I arrived at Santa Anna’s football field before anyone had taken the field. I took the opportunity to sit at the end of the field on the pad where the high jump mats take up residence during track. It was a beautiful evening. A slight breeze was blowing and the temperature was in the high 80’s. Before long the padless Blackwell hornets jogged onto the field to begin warm ups. The Santa Anna Mountaineers would soon join them.
The cheerleaders sat up the stereo system and planted the Mountaineer flag beside the bell. I was able to get a really cool picture of the flag with the sun setting in the background. Sometimes it’s the little things that make my trip to various towns really cool.
As I was taking pictures around the field, I spied Coach Tom McVey walking across the field. He was flexing. I can only assume he wanted me to take a picture, but I wasn’t ready and totally missed the moment. Later he gave me a hug and welcomed me to Santa Anna. We had a really good conversation about a variety of subjects. I did notice that the football field grass was in excellent condition and rivaled that of the field in Sands. We also talked about how some seasons are “down” seasons and are largely character building. I could tell he really cares about his players.
Just prior to game start, I found Coach Lowry. I had been hearing he had a young but good Hornet team. Coach admitted he had mostly underclassmen on defense but his offense was made of some good seniors. He was very complimentary of his players and thought their play would take them pretty far this year. I wished him luck and went to find my spot on the sideline.
While the score was somewhat lopsided, I saw a Mountaineer team that kept fighting and never gave up. You just can’t teach that. The Hornets were pretty solid on both sides of the ball. Santa Anna was a great place to visit. Another Friday night under the lights and a long drive home, smiling and jamming to some good tunes.
Observations from my time at Santa Anna: