SPRINGFIELD, Ohio (WDTN) – The Springfield Wildcats Football Team will compete in the state championship game at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton on Friday. Wildcats family, friends and fans are showing their team spirit back home in the Miami Valley.
There’s a lot of Wildcats pride in the Springfield community.
“This town couldn’t be more proud of them,” lifelong Springfield resident Michael Morris said. “The program has turned around. The kids are having fun. It’s just an awesome time to be here. And so everybody’s just getting behind them.”
The Springfield City School District and community threw a send-off for the Wildcats Thursday.
The team made it to the state championship game for the second year in a row. They’re up for a rematch against the team they fell to last year, Lakewood St. Edward.
2 NEWS found some Wildcats fans at Mother Stewart’s Brewing on Columbia Street in Springfield.
“It’s nice to see Springfield coming together over something that brings these young kids such joy, and have joy in their community,” Springfield resident Audrey Smith, who graduated from Springfield High School in 2014, said.
Mother Stewart’s is hosting a watch party Friday starting at 6 p.m. They’ll have the game, full audio, on all their TVs.
The community’s hoping they’ll bring home the trophy this time.
“I think now Springfield has higher expectations of their athletic program and the football team, and you kind of almost expect them to make it to this level now,” parent of Springfield High School alumni Joe Stahl said. “But you know, I think it brings a lot of community pride when the hometown team makes it to states.”
2 NEWS asked everyone we spoke with Thursday night to share a message with the team.
“Go wildcats, you guys got this,” Smith said.
“Fight hard,” Joe Stahl said. “Represent us well,” Jenn Stahl said.
“Whether they come back state champs or not, we’re proud of what they’ve done,” Morris said.
Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at the Tom Benson Pro Football Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton on Friday.
According to the district, all schools will be dismissed early so students and supporters can drive to the game.
Tune in to 2 Sports at 10 and 11 p.m. for highlights and full coverage of the game.