Parental involvement makes the difference for football team

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Getting ready - The Wildcats football team was highly motivated during its spring training

JULIE BERTRAND / Independent reporter

The Wm. E. Hay Wildcats football spring training is already coming to an end, and high school principal and team coach Norbert Baharally couldn’t be happier about the team’s performance.

“The guys are committed and dedicated to the upcoming season so far,” said Baharally.

At a jamboree-style tournament that was held in Canmore at the beginning of June, the team won its four games with comfortable point margins.

The players’ first game was against Pincher Creek and they beat them 12-6. Their opponent for the second game was Canmore and the Wildcats won 16-7. Then, they took on Carstairs, winning 18-0. The team concluded the tournament with a win against Drumheller, 16-6.

Baharally credits the team success to the players’ enthusiasm.

“I thought it was our best spring camp we’ve had in a really long time,” he said.

“There was lots of participation, even when we went out to Canmore. We had 32 players go with us, which is a big number for spring camp. We’ve never had that number go before.”

According to Baharally, most of the players have been through the minor football program.

“They understand the system and the rationale behind spring camp,” he explained.

Baharally believes that parental involvement lies at the root of the players’ enthusiasm.

“They’ve come up knowing the system and now when the kids are in high school, parents want to be involved,” he said.

“Parents have approached me and are willing to do things and volunteering. It’s been great.”

Parents are now in charge of collecting the registration fees, leaving Baharally time to keep the communication channels open.

“There are emails going out on a regular basis to the parents, not just me communicating with the kids on the field,” he said.

The situation is a far cry from previous years, when there was little to none parent involvement in football.

“There was very little parental involvement, simply because the school was involved in everything, doing and organizing everything,” said Baharally.

“There was very little communication with the high school, each kid and the parents.”

The team will get a break until August, which is when training camp will start. The first game should be at the beginning of September.

“We’re looking forward to the regular season starting. I think we’ll be very competitive,” concluded Baharally.

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