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Despite little outside help, Raider supporters make sure Thanksgiving Day game is played two days later

POSTED December 01, 2014
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney


TORRINGTON: With very little help from anybody but themselves, the Torrington football team, their coaches and families pitched in to clear their work place on Saturday and the Raiders took care of the rest in a 55-43 win over the Watertown Indians.

For yet another time, this new complex was a source of some puzzling responses to the needs of the students that play sports on it.

When word first came down on Friday morning that volunteers were needed to shovel off 100-yards plus of heavy wet snow, one would have thought that all parties that are normally involved in getting a field ready would be on hand.

Ah, but you would be wrong.

For some strange reason, everyone except for the above mentioned groups stayed away with a vengeance.

Here’s the issue.

At present, the Turf Committee and the City of Torrington still claim responsibility for the complex that was completed in early October.

The Torrington Board of Education, the body responsible for taking care of school facilities in the city, has taken a ‘we won’t even acknowledge that there is a field out there’ approach.

Not a single offer of help came from anybody, nor did direction for what to do.

Raider Athletic Director Mike McKenna was left on his own, without help from the school, the city or anybody but the volunteers and you know what? He did a terrific job of making sure everything and everybody was taken care of.

This is Connecticut. It snows, we play and watch sports in the snow so the fans who came out from both sides had themselves a good day. Football fans are a hardy bunch.

What was astounding was the fact that at least one member of the Board of Education was out at the field early on Saturday taking pictures of the condition of the field.

Why?

They claim they have nothing to do with it and proved it by not lifting a finger to help get the joint ready.

Pretty sure though, it will come up at the next BOE meeting with complaints of some sort.

Kind of like the ridiculous commentary that this field is still a cancer causing beast, regardless of how many national and local reports come out to the contrary.

Just what was the condition of the field?

Remarkable considering how it had to be cleared by hand or by snow blower.

Using a plow on a just completed turf field was not an option and you have to respect that opinion.

There was room enough on both sidelines for the teams, the officials, the chain gang and a couple of hardy reporters from LCS (John Nestor and I).

Imagine is more resources or manpower was made available so that the players and volunteers did not have to do it all?

There were no injuries and no complaints. The teams put on an entertaining game for “The Helmet”, combining for nearly 1000 yards of total offense.

Torrington has a history when it comes to fighting over field or complexes and it is, quite frankly, embarrassing and needs to stop.

The very students we are supposed to set an example for were the ones who set the proper example for the adults who continue to fight and criticize behind the scenes while trying to claim they have the kid’s backs.

Let’s see what comes out over the next few days.

The only thing that should come out from any elected official is some sort of accommodation for those who did the work to make sure the student athletes at Torrington High School and their fans could watch a football game.

I for one, salute their efforts and don’t get me started on how the Varsity Alumni Club, an organization that has given hundreds of thousands of dollars to seniors going to college over the years, has to play their boys and girls alumni games at the Armory instead of at Torrington High School.

Hey, all the credit in the world to the Armory, they did a great job but not letting kids come back to play at the school they attended is simply idiotic.

Overall, a great Thanksgiving weekend, despite the lack of help from those who should be the first ones to come out.

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