By VINCE PELUSO — firstname.lastname@example.org
Reaching the playoffs in football is a difficult task.
So difficult, no one from Ashtabula County has done it since 2002.
And, in the case of the Edgewood Warriors, it’s never been done in school history — until now.
With the Warriors set to do battle with the top-ranked Brookfield Warriors in a Division IV, Region 13 first-round game Friday night (7, WFUN), first-year athletic administrator Steve Kray and the Edgewood athletic staff has planned plenty of events to help celebrate the accomplishment.
Thursday, Edgewood will hold a community bonfire and pep rally in the back of the school near the old softball field from 7:30-9:30 p.m.
“We’re trying to involve the community as much as we can,” Kray said. “The football team will be in attendance, the band will play, we’ll have a nice bonfire and get some community excitement about us making the playoffs.”
Friday, Edgewood will hold two pep rallies. At 10 a.m., students in grades 3 through 8 will be bussed from Braden and the elementary schools to the high school for a pep rally.
At 2 p.m., there will be a pep rally for all high school students, that Kray said he sees as being a sendoff for the team.
Those interested in purchasing presale tickets for Friday’s game, which will kickoff at 7:30 p.m. at Brookfield, can do so at a discounted rate of $7 from Kray at Edgewood from 11 a.m. through 1 p.m. today through Friday, or from 6-8 p.m. today and 7:30-9:30 p.m. on Thursday. A portion of the presale ticket money will come back to Edgewood.
The full rate at the gate will be $9.
Those buying presale tickets can also pay an additional $3 (making a total of $10) and get a ride to and from the game on “spirit buses.”
The spirit buses will leave Edgewood at 5 p.m. with the football team and band buses.
“The bus leaves at 5, the team has a charter bus, then the band and everybody is going to leave at the same time,” Kray said. “The vision we have is we’re going to show up like an army and everyone will pull in together.
“If you don’t want to leave that early with the buses, we would still like a lot of people to be at Edgewood when we leave just to pack the parking lot and show support for the team as we leave.”
All Edgewood fans are encouraged to wear to red the game for a “red out.”
Warrior playoff T-shirts (which are red) are also on sale for $10, but must be preordered through the Edgewood athletic department by 1 p.m. today. Those interested in ordering can call Kray at 998-1413.
Kray said the excitement and support he’s seen from the community and Ashtabula County has been overwhelming.
“We are very excited, we received multiple communications from our rivals and everyone who have wished us luck,” he said. “We’ve heard from the community and they’re very much behind this. I’m very excited for our kids and it’s good thing for our program. I looked at something that said 95 teams in the state have never missed the playoffs and now we can take our team off that list.
“We’re trying to make this something these kids will never forget.”
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