SIDNEY — The 2015 high school football season gets underway Friday night, and before it’s over, history will be made at Lehman High School.
Lehman started football back in 1970, and in the 45 years since, there has never been a night game at Lehman. The team has always used the facilities at Sidney and Piqua.
But that’s going to change in week 7 this season. Athletic director and head football coach Dick Roll confirmed this week that on Oct. 9, the Cavaliers will play their Homecoming game against Hardin Northern on the field behind Lehman high school.
“The whole school is excited about it,” Roll said. “I think because it’s just different. First time in our 45-year history that there will be a night game here.”
Of course, it will necessitate bringing in portable lights because there are no lights at the field, which is situated inside the track.
And there aren’t many bleachers, either, and Roll said there are no plans to bring many more in.
“The only bleachers we’re going to add are the ones at the soccer field,” Roll said. We’re going to sit on what we have and tell people to bring lawn chairs.”
Roll said the idea first came from one of the parents, Bill Bosway.
“When he approached me, I just kind of shucked it off,” said Roll. “But the more we talked about it, the more we thought it might be a good thing, and we got excited about it.”
And it’s expanded into much more than a football game. Being Homecoming, that’s the theme that will dominate what is going to be a four-day event.
“We’re going to have a bonfire and soccer on Thursday, Friday will be the Homecoming game, Saturday there will be JV football, volleyball, soccer… And Sunday will be Mass,” Roll said. “The idea is to bring people home.”
Roll said plans include honoring not only the very first Lehman football team, but also the four teams that made it to the state semifinals.
Admission will be charged as cars drive into the parking lot. “It will be like going to a drive-in movie,” Roll quipped. “Like, OK how many you got in the car?”
With ample rainfall this summer, Roll said the field is in excellent shape. And it will be all painted up for the occasion.
“I’m excited,” he said.
Roll said there are no plans to make this an annual event. “There are too many people who put money into (Sidney Memorial Stadium),” he said. “So I don’t think it’s something that will be a regular occurrence.”
Reach Ken Barhorst at 937-538-4818