Even the lunch workers are cheering for the winning football team at Andover High School.
”They write supportive messages on these white boards in the cafeteria,” said senior linebacker Adam Ladd, 17. “It’s great.”
Five of his teammates smiled, agreeing that football spirit is truly alive at AHS – and it’s been a long eight years since that happened. This year’s team is undefeated so far at 7-0, with four big conference games remaining.
You have to go back until at least 2004 to find Warrior football pride showing itself in the school’s hallways as it is now.
“The last time was in 2004, when the team went 10-1,” said Cam Farnham, 17, a wide receiver and kick returner.
That one loss was against Chelmsford. The Warriors play Chelmsford tomorrow, Friday, Oct. 26, at 7 p.m., in Chelmsford.
“Dr. Lord (principal) announces his lightning strikes every day recognizing people for different things. Now, he mentions us. It’s pretty cool,” Ladd added.
It’s the first year for Chris Lord, who has said school spirit has been lacking. It’s been a tumultuous past couple of years at the school, as the community has dealt with fallout from difficult teacher contract negotiations, three years of temporary principals and a basketball-team hazing story that made statewide news.
Having an undefeated football team is helping to revive school spirit. And the team is not alone.
Lord lists several school successes when he talks about reviving school spirit. Football is certainly one of the successes - but not the only one.
“Our girls volleyball team is also undefeated and their coach just had his 400th game,” Lord said. “Bowdoin College just sent us a silver platter because two of their top students graduated from Andover High...the college said our kids are very well prepared for college.