With face paint, jerseys, signs and horns, parents and students were all ready to see the best high school football teams from Division I, II, and III compete for a final time this season hoping for that one last W, a state title.This past week the Vermont Principal’s Association High School Football Championships games were held in Castleton’s Spartan Stadium.
The stadium was jam packed with parents and students hoping to will their team to victory.
The Division III game featured top-seeded Bellows Falls against second seeded Windsor; the Division II title offered a one-three matchup of Middlebury vs. Rice; and the Division I showdown of Bellows Free Academy-St. Albans against Hartford.
The Division III game was played first in the morning, followed by the Division I game in the afternoon, which gave way to the Division II title to be played under the lights of Spartan Stadium.
Karen Claflin, mother of Hartford’s Josh Claflin, was dressed for the occasion. Decked out in her blue Hartford jersey and a pin with her son’s picture, she was ready to be loud and have some fun.
“This is very exciting, a bit nerve racking, but fun. Especially for the kids,” Claflin said with a big smile.
Those nerves were quickly replaced with fun as Hartford stomped BFA-St. Albans 33-0 for the title, returning the favor to a BFA-St. Albans squad who shut them out a month earlier.
Rice and Middlebury got the late start for the Div. II title game.
Before the game Middlebury’s Jordan Connor was excited to be playing on a dry field as the sun was shining all day for football.
“Our field at home is notorious for being muddy and wet, this will be a nice change,” Connor said.
His teammate Kyle Kerr agreed that playing on a dry field would be good but also said he was thrilled to be playing in a stadium like the one he was standing in.
“This is awesome. I have never played in a place like this, this is pretty cool, it should be fun,” Kerr said.
Rice went on to win the Div. II championship, upsetting the previously unbeaten Middlebury, 38-20.
The Div. II showdown featured the number one and two seeds Bellows Falls and Windsor High Schools.
Windsor was the defending champ but was no match for a powerful Bellows Falls team, falling 39-22.
It was Bellows Falls tenth title, second most in Vermont behind only Mount St. Joseph’s of Rutland who reigns with 12 State Football Championships.