As readers of this blog have noticed, we’ve taken an interest this spring in the out-of-the-ordinary ways the graduation season has played out for athletes in St. Louis area schools, from St. Louis University High School to Fort Zumwalt South.
We’ve learned of another, happening tonight for seniors on the Francis Howell Central Girls Soccer squad. The team defeated Pattonville for the school’s first ever trip to the state semifinals, meaning four Spartans could be playing for a state championship in Blue Springs over the weekend while their classmates get diplomas in front of family and friends.
We asked Activities Director Scott Harris to walk us through the decision of what to do next:
We wanted to make sure that our student-athletes, their parents and families were able to enjoy both of these experiences and have the memories of playing for State Championship as well as walking across the stage and being handed your high school diploma that is so special to so many people in their respective lives.
Dr. Sonny Arnel, our principal, Dr. Pam Sloan, our Superintendent and the Francis Howell School District Board of Education were very excited to support this and even take part in this special ceremony, along with the graduation ceremonies on this upcoming Saturday. This just shows their commitment to the students of our high school and our district and that they understand the importance of school attachment and education based athletics and activities.
We are hoping and planning to make this event as similar as Saturday’s but with a few extra surprises that are specific to these four young ladies and their team to help celebrate their recent accomplishments.
One bonus is that with a ceremony for four, there’s no concern over tickets and seating for the 6pm Wednesday ceremony at the school’s auditorium. A considerably larger crowd is hoped for 9:30am Thursday at a Don Muench Stadium pep rally to send the team off on the road.
The Spartans face Lee’s Summit at 6pm Friday at Blue Springs High School for the right to face the winner of St. Joseph’s Academy vs. St. Teresa’s Academy at 4pm Saturday. The third place game would be played at noon Saturday.