South Adams community adjusts to having limited amount of fans

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BERNE, Ind. (WANE) – The South Adams Starfires beat Winchester Community by a score of 41-8 on Friday but not many fans were there to see it.

High schools across Adams County, in compliance with the health department, are only allowing each senior-student athlete to have four adults to attend games specific to their sport.

“When we first heard the word that only senior parents were able to come we were hurt, we were upset, we didn’t understand,” said Lisa Wanner who’s son is a junior on South Adams’ football team. “He’s my son so as a parent I want to be here supporting him, cheering him on. I haven’t missed a game in his life ever.”

However, Wanner said she and other underclassmen parents are just happy their sons get to have a season.

“We just came to the realization that as long as our child is playing and we get this football season so we’re going to try to be as supportive as we can in whatever way that we can,” Wanner said.

Luckily for Wanner, one senior had an extra ticket for Friday’s game so she was able to attend.

In addition to some parents, cheerleaders were also allowed to be at Friday’s game. However, there was no marching band and no concession stand. Some fans sat in lawn chairs across the street to view the game from a distance.

The game was also live streamed for those who could not attend.

John Stutzman, the parent of a Starfires senior said he feels lucky that he’s still able to watch his son play throughout the pandemic.

“It’s very important, you watch your son play all of the years of his life and he’s a senior this year. He has grandparents that have been watching him for years that aren’t going to be here tonight,” Stutzman said. “We just feel really fortunate that we get to be here to watch him. Some parents aren’t that lucky.”

Not having as many fans in the stadium has been an adjustment for the players as well.

“It’s been pretty tough only getting four tickets. Usually both sets of grandparents and my parents come… its just something we have to deal with,” said Braden Bixler, a senior wide receiver for South Adams. “But at the end of the day we’re just so excited to be out here. We’re going to give 100 percent no matter what.”

According to the health department’s statement, no fans from visiting schools are permitted to attend games with the exception of games played within Adams County. However, some parents are confident they will figure out how to be there.

“We’ll figure out a way if we have to sit in a parking lot on top of an RV,” Stutzman said. “We’ll figure out a way to watch him play.”

Next week the Starfires travel to Lewis Cass Jr-Sr High School for an away game at 7 p.m.

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