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Football contact days look different ahead of tenuous season
If not for the masks, you wouldn't even know there was anything different.

"Everyone was just flying around, screaming, yelling, it was awesome," said senior Erik Albertus. "Everyone was just super excited to be out here."

This year's Lakeland Union pride camp was more than just a chance for everyone to get back on the field.

It was also a brief respite before a month and a half more of no football.

"It's actually really upbeat and there's a lot of high energy still," said senior Barron Lenz. "We've just been making the most out of the situation we've been handed."

The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association's board of control allowed fall sports to go forward, but pushed the start date of high-risk sports like football back to the week of September 7, making an already strange season even more unusual.

"We haven't been able to go live against each other or wear any equipment," Lenz said. "Its been tough to figure out where guys are actually going to be."

Just because fall sports are allowed, doesn't mean that Lakeland is going to play.

District policies and COVID conditions will still determine if and how a season happens.

"If there's a way we can play football in the fall and do it safely and responsibly, then I'm all for it," said head coach Dan Barutha. "Depending on what the scenario is, if we need to move it to the spring and that's the only way to play, I'm fine moving it."

For now, the T-Birds are just happy to be on the same field and doing everything they can to make sure it happens again.

"Everybody's on board with it," Albertus said. "Everybody wants to have a season, so everybody's doing whatever it takes, their own part to have everyone healthy and ready to go."

The first game of the high school football season is scheduled for the week of September 20.

Story By: Andrew Goldstein

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