LAMAR, Mo. — After Lamar’s quarterfinal win over Ava, they’re prepping for their state semifinal game. They figured they’d be facing Maryville, but as it turns out, Richmond will be their opponent.
Jared Beshore, Lamar head coach, says, “They’ve got some really big and long athletes on both the offensive and defensive line, then they also have a quarterback that’s a really, really good ball player. He’s a big kid, he can run, he’s athletic. He can be very physical too on both sides of the ball, so we’re just gonna prep our kids for that and be ready to play another big, tough, physical football game.”
Luckily for the Tigers, they’re hosting Saturday’s game, which means Richmond will have to deal with stands full of Lamar fans.
Mason Brown, Lamar center, says, “It’s gonna be really special and fun having all of our home fans here, and just the atmosphere that our stadium has. It’s gonna be great.”
That atmosphere is built on years and years of successful Lamar teams, which means the expectations for this year’s squad are that much higher.
Beshore says, “I think that it just kind of comes with the territory. The kids have grown up with those expectations, so I don’t think it bothers them anymore. I think they’ve learned to live with it.”
This week, the team is doing more than just living with the expectations: they’re looking to rise to the occasion, and enjoy every second of it.
Brown says, “It’s just special. I don’t know how else to explain it. Ever since I was like in third grade playing football, I’ve always just kind of dreamt about being in high school and making a deep playoff run.”
Beshore says, “This is a week of football that’s very memorable for our program. You don’t get to host games like this very often, so when you do, you have to take advantage of it, soak it in, and have a lot of fun while we do it.”
Kickoff is slated for 1:00 p.m. on this Saturday, November 27 at Lamar’s Thomas O’Sullivan Stadium.