Two high school football teams continued their gameday tradition Saturday

Friday night football is one of the more popular high school sports, but for upstate New York, Saturday was its big football day. Only two schools in division VII still have the tradition: Saranac Lake High School and Saranac Central High School, where they have played all of their home football games this season on Saturday afternoons. “It’s not a normal Friday night, because that’s all we’ve ever known,” Saranac Lake High School football coach Eric Bennett said. “We don’t have lights, so obviously we can’t have Friday night games … It’s been more recently where schools have come online with lights, and so they’ve switched from their Saturday to day Friday.” Although it is slightly different to the Friday night experience under the lights, both schools still value holding on to the tradition. It provides an opportunity to enjoy warmer weather during the day while playing games on the cooler North Wales Autumn nights. “It’s kind of a nice play on Saturday, to be honest,” Saranac Central senior quarterback Landen Smith said. “The sun is out. A lovely day.” “I like to cheer on Saturdays,” Saranac senior soccer cheerleader Madison Burns said. “It’s much colder on Friday, much colder on Friday.” Schools have also found ways to establish their own game day traditions through the Saturday experience. In Saranac Lake, fans gather at Wilson-Raymond field, which is just a four-minute walk from the high school. The entire football team takes that walk together in silence from the high school to the field before game time, an iconic walk that has passed through several generations of Saranac Lake Football, “It our walk from our school over to the game field is a tradition like no other,” Bennett said. “You can talk to people who played 20-3 0 years ago and they’re still walking and moving, it feels right, it feels like home.” “There’s nothing like it,” Saranac Lake senior running back Carter Hewitt said. “You go over on the walk, you smack the stop sign, and then you’re sprinting and the whole crowd is cheering, so there’s really nothing like it.” It is also an opportunity to take a break from school. As no classes are held on Saturdays, it is an opportunity for players, coaches and community supporters to focus on nothing but football. “Usually the teams are happier on Saturdays, because there’s no school,” Burns said. “Football is pretty much the whole day,” Hewitt said. “On Saturday you wake up, you think about football, you play football … there is nothing else.” “I think it’s great on the weekend when everyone can come,” Saranac senior soccer cheerleader Carlie McCoy said. “I think it’s amazing a whole bunch of people coming,” said another Saranac Football promoter Tayler Bezil. “Especially our student section. We have a lot of students who come to cheer.” “It’s been great,” Saranac Central head football coach Dylan Everleth said. “I still love the idea of ​​having people here and having a big community support here on Saturday.” Although both teams do not have their home games on Fridays, they still had the opportunity to experience the Friday night atmosphere on the road for half time. of the season. “I love Friday night games,” Hewitt said. “Playing on the turf is much better to play on, I usually do a bit better on turf. You can cut back on it a bit better.” It is a direction Saranac and Saranac Lake could be heading in the future. Bennett has been part of the movement to move his school to join the trial d full time Friday night “There’s some momentum for some field turf possibly,” Bennett said. “I’m sure if that were to happen, hopefully lights would go along with that and there would be a chance in tradition, but that’s a long way down the road.” He understands there are challenges in the way, which raises questions about an official date for when lights would be installed in Saranac and Saranac Lake “We live in one of the most challenging climates,” he said. Bennett. “The climate plays into it … in terms of how cold it is in October at night.” While seniors like Hewitt may not get to experience what Friday home game days are like now, it’s something he hopes will happen and will appreciate seeing from the stands as a fan after his high school career. “I would love to see that in the future,” Hewitt said. “Coming back to watch Friday night at Saranac Lake would be a very cool sight. I didn’t get any experience, but I’d love to see future generations come up and get to experience that.”

Friday night football is one of the more popular high school sports, but for upstate New York, Saturday was its big football day.

Only two schools in division VII still have the tradition: Saranac Lake High School and Saranac Central High School, where they have played all of their home football games this season on Saturday afternoons.

“It’s not a normal Friday night, because that’s all we’ve ever known,” Saranac Lake High School football coach Eric Bennett said. “We don’t have lights, so obviously we can’t have Friday night games… More recently schools have come online with lights, so they’ve changed from Saturday to Friday.”

Although it is a little different to the Friday night experience under the lights, both schools still value holding on to the tradition. It provides an opportunity to enjoy warmer weather during the day while playing games on the cooler North Wales Autumn nights.

“It’s kind of a nice play on Saturday, to be honest,” Saranac Central senior quarterback Landen Smith said. “The sun is out. A lovely day.”

“I like to cheer on Saturdays,” said Saranac senior soccer cheerleader Madison Burns. “It’s much colder on Friday, much colder on Friday.”

Schools have also found ways to establish their own game day traditions through Saturday’s experience. In Saranac Lake, fans gather at Wilson-Raymond field, which is just a four-minute walk from the high school. The entire football team takes that walk together in silence from the high school to the field before game time, an iconic walk that has passed through several generations of Saranac Lake Football,

“Our walk from our school over to the playing field is a tradition like no other,” Bennett said. “You can talk to people who played 20-30 years ago and they still walk away, it feels right, it feels like home.”

“There’s nothing like it,” Saranac Lake senior running back Carter Hewitt said. “You go over on the walk, you smack the stop sign, and then you’re sprinting and the whole crowd is cheering, so there’s really nothing like it.”

It is also an opportunity to take a break from school. As no classes are held on Saturdays, it is an opportunity for players, coaches and community supporters to focus on nothing but football.

“Usually the teams are happier on Saturdays, because there’s no school,” Burns said.

“Football is pretty much the whole day,” Hewitt said. “On Saturday you wake up, you think about football, you play football … there is nothing else.”

“I think it’s great on the weekend when everyone can come,” Saranac senior soccer cheerleader Carlie McCoy said.

“I think it’s great that a whole bunch of people are coming,” said another Saranac Football promoter, Tayler Bezil. “Especially our student section. We have a lot of students who come to cheer.”

“It’s been great,” Saranac Central head football coach Dylan Everleth said. “I still love the idea of ​​having people here and having a big community support here on Saturday.”

While both teams do not have their home games on Fridays, they still had the chance to experience the Friday night atmosphere on the road for half of the season.

“I love Friday night games,” Hewitt said. “Playing on the turf is much better to play on, I usually do a bit better on turf. You can cut back on it a bit better.”

It’s a direction Saranac and Saranac Lake could be heading in the future. Bennett has been part of the movement to move his school to join the full-time experience on Friday nights

“There’s some momentum for some field turf possibly,” Bennett said. “I’m sure if that were to happen, hopefully lights would go along with that and there would be a chance in tradition, but that’s a long way down the road.”

He understands there are challenges in the way, which raises questions about an official date for the installation of lights in Saranac and Saranac Lake.

“We live in one of the most challenging climates,” Bennett said. “The climate plays into it … in terms of how cold it gets in October at night.”

While seniors like Hewitt may not get to experience what Friday home game days are like now, it’s something he hopes will happen and will appreciate seeing from the stands as a fan on after his high school career.

“I would love to see that in the future,” Hewitt said. “Coming back to watch Friday night at Saranac Lake would be a very cool sight. I didn’t get any experience, but I’d love to see future generations come up and get to experience that.”

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