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Ormond Beach Observer Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017 1 week ago

Where is the love? Fans need to show up for all sports, not just football

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As supporters of a school, you need to show up for your athletes.
by: Ray Boone Staff Writer
Seabreeze's Riley Oldham drives in for a layup against FPC. Photo by Ray Boone

A few weeks ago, I drove to Flagler Palm Coast High School to cover the boys basketball game between FPC and Seabreeze.

I had only covered a hand full of high school basketball ball games until that point, but any time the Sandcrabs square off against one of the area’s teams, I expect it to be a pretty meaningful game for the fans. But after what I saw in the stands at FPC High School, I’m not so sure anymore.

The Bulldogs’ fans showed up enough, but only handfuls of Sandcrabs fans were sprinkled throughout the gym.

Now, are the Sandcrabs a great team? Seabreeze does have a 2-1 record, but by no stretch of the imagination is it as powerhouse program.

But is it a team of Volusia County schools? Yes, and that should make all the difference.

Before the start of the 2017-18 school year, I had never covered a high school football game. The first game I went to? FPC versus Matanzas, and, boy, was I impressed. Like a can of sardines, the stands were so packed, they were overflowing. Hundreds of people watched the game standing along the fence near the field. And this is mostly true for the football team’s of Seabreeze and Mainland. The opposing team’s fans didn’t always show up, but you could sure as heck count on waves and waves of Sandcrabs’ and Buccaneers’ fans. And that’s something to be proud of.

But, football season is over now, and it’s time to move on. At least, until next season comes around.

Fans need to show up for the area’s athletes — all of its athletes.

Basketball was just one example, too. Seabreeze and Mainland have a bevy of other sports that are going to compete at a high level this season.

For the Sandcrabs: The boys and girls soccer teams are among the best in the area. The boys are 5-0-2 and the girls are 7-2, and both have a great shot at districts and beyond.

For the Buccaneers: Soccer isn’t so great, but you can always count on a good basketball game.

So, my question is, why can’t these teams get the same support as the football program, one that was bounced in the first round of the FHSAA Playoffs and one that didn’t make the postseason to begin with?

It’s not fair, and it’s not right.

Kids, regardless of the sport, need as much support as they can get.

To the fans who do show up: Keep doing what you’re doing. But for the vast majority who don’t: Where’s your support for the kids who are just trying to give it their all for their school every game?

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