2023 Week 9 (Ohio & Pennsylvania)
With everything going on, I hadn’t really planned what games, if any, to do this weekend. Friday made the most sense. Since my daughter would be at it. Thursday wasn’t a concern. So, Friday evening I was at home in Ohio and made my way over to Stambaugh Stadium.
I had only been here once for a high school game. That was a Thursday night when Ursuline had hosted Warren Harding. I had called ahead, and was told I’d be able to get my pass at the gate.
I also forgot that Stambaugh Stadium would charge for parking. And had very little cash on me. In fact, I had a couple of ones, and a bunch of a change. Parking was $5. At first, I was just going to go elsewhere, but the attendant let me in to park. I found later I probably could’ve parked right at the stadium, but hadn’t thought there was a place. Turns out, there was.
So, my daughter and I went over to the gate to meet my ex, who had her pass, and I inquired about my press pass. The gate, as is so common, acted as if they had never heard of media before. But they did find a pass they had, and gave it to me. It had no defining markings on it. Just that it was a pass for that particular game. There was no security after that, as I walked through the side gate while my daughter went with her mom, and I was on the ramp up to the field. Where I was let in.
It was my first time on the field at Stambaugh Stadium. And this was a big game, even if Ursuline had been on the winning side for a while.
#45 – Youngstown Cardinal Mooney v. Youngstown Ursuline
I found my daughter in the stands and she came down to meet me after we had just parted a few minutes earlier, excited whenever she sees me on a field. Or on television.
She then went and sat with her mother. And then the pregame started. There was a threat of rain, so I didn’t bring my wide angle lens in. And glad I didn’t. The rain came in with some heavy wind that made photography a pain. My rain hood covered the camera, and I had my winter jacket on that is decent for some rain protection.
Mooney started strong, and after a quick trading scores, Cardinal Mooney only trailed 15-10 at the break against undefeated Ursuline.
In the second half, Ursuline moved the ball well and started to pull away. A single TD in the third quarter led to the dam bursting in the fourth. A 27 yard TD run, and a pick six setup a 35-16 victory for Ursuline. With the rain, I had given up trying to use rosters for the scoring plays. So my tweet updates were just the teams and yardages when available.
After the game, I went home with my daughter, and tried to get photos processed. But couldn’t find my card reader. So, after giving up on it, I used my camera’s Micro USB port to feed directly to the laptop. This worked, as the photos were just on one camera. I later found that the card reader had entered the wash. Stuck to a sock as the plastic casing had broken apart and the small prongs that had been used to read the metal edge of the SD card had turned into spines that stuck to the rough fabric.
I also made stuffed jalapenos while I handled the photos. Getting them done sometime by 3am.
My Saturday had just one game on it. In years past, I had missed seeing a game at Fairview twice. And with a Saturday afternoon game on the schedule, I had decided I was not going to pass it up.
In the morning, I took my daughter to swim class. And when that was finished, we left Youngstown and traveled north along OH11 to I-90. And stopped into Fairview. I had hoped for a decent town sign photo. But settled for the township building’s sign located conveniently across the street from the school’s athletic venues.
It was cold and windy. And my daughter had brought a much thinner jacket than necessary. So, I gave her my jacket, and my wide angle camera, so she could play photographer while I did the game. Or rather, I had attempted photograph. The rain, if you could call it that, was minimal. Just a light nuisance at times but negligible at best.
#46 – Fairview v. North East
I had seen both teams previously. Before looking at my records, I had thought I had never seen Fairview. However, I had seen them play Sharon in Greenville in the playoffs a few years earlier. A game that I had done the sideline photography.
My daughter stayed on the track for most of the game, and I took time out of photography to help her with both her phone and with her attempts at photography.
The game matched the conditions. It was slow, scoreless at times, and difficult. The first quarter passed with no score. And it looked like halftime would be scoreless, too. Until Fairview’s QB Vincent Campoli would punch one in from 2 yards out to give the hosts a 7-0 lead.
In the second half, North East would tie it on a 32 yard pass. But Fairview would answer. Again on the legs of Campoli, from 3 yards out. Aided by another pick six on my weekend, Fairview’s Jake Harkness would run it back about 40 yards to go up, 21-7. And North East would return the kickoff for a score.
In the fourth quarter, Campoli would finish off the day with a 1 yard TD run. Fairview would win, 28-14 as the fourth quarter wound to a close. It felt a lot more insurmountable than just two scores. But, North East’s offense struggled aside from the single scoring pass.
There were some night games. But my plans for the night were to head to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport to pick up my sister. While my daughter and I stopped in Conneaut. Truck World has fried chicken at “Maverick’s Diner” and it’s a must stop. It’s also cheaper than Popeyes or KFC. And better.
After getting my sister, we stopped at a Longhorn Steakhouse. I had a ribeye, no photo, and we drove to Greenville. Before my daughter and I then headed home.
Only two games. Four teams I had seen before. And some I had seen many times. It was my 8th time seeing Ursuline and 7th seeing Cardinal Mooney. While I was just seeing Fairview and North East for the second time, each.
PHOTOS OF THE WEEK
51 New Teams
21 New Stadiums
1,544 different teams
489 different stadiums
1,420 total games
I’ll be home. And I’ve got some plans.
For photos from this game, and others this weekend, click HERE.
For photos from previous weeks and seasons, visit http://www.flickr.com/sykotyk/sets/