Editor Notes: This is part three of three on the student section.
Anyone at the OHS who has ever been involved with a sport or has been a part of the student section knows how much fun it can be and how much it means to the athletes participating. Home field advantage is more than just being in your own court, field, stadium, or arena. Its about having that piece of mind that you are playing with your friends in front of your peers and they are cheering right back with you. Bottom line, a student section can almost serve as an extra player in many cases, especially around crunch time during section play.
Throughout the school year there have been a few minor suspensions in regard to cheering that were considered by the administration to be crude and obnoxious, which may cause some students to wonder, “Isn’t that the point of a student section, to create a disadvantage for the other team without cheating?” However, the school administration wants students to have fun while keeping the cheering within reason. Although other schools may do certain cheers that are rather mean yet funny, the OHS administration has set itself to a higher standard and its students should follow in doing the same.
Many may feel that football season is when the student section is at its finest in regard to numbers and enthusiasm, but what happens during the winter and spring? The number of students in the school does not drastically disappear so why do the number of students in the student section? Many people that make up the student section in the fall find their way into winter sports which begs the question, “Is it a matter of the sport and season or does the OHS lack enthusiasm towards given sports during the winter and spring?” Senior, Collin Bruns summed it up best saying, “As a hockey player I think it’s really great when we have a crowd to play in front of, especially at home. Nothing, for us, ever compares to the fall student section but with so many other sports going on it’s tough to do so and I think most athletes realize that.” It is fair to say that many of the students making up the ‘OHS Dog Pound’ have sports that conflict with each other, and the fact that each can still draw a crowd of there fellow peers is a pretty special thing that other schools may not have.
Although the student section may be slim in numbers at times, it always finds a way to come together. When teams are set at a higher stage, whether its at the state tournament or a big section game people find a way to represent Owatonna. Whether it is due to appreciation towards the team or wanting to show other towns what a real crowd looks like, Owatonna certainly has some of the best fans around.