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Spirited, whole-day event marks reopening of Jackman Field

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U-High Varsity Goalie Jamie Miller gives fans high fives as he leads the team onto the field.

U-High Varsity Goalie Jamie Miller gives fans high fives as he leads the team onto the field.

Tosya Khodarkovsky

Tosya Khodarkovsky

U-High Varsity Goalie Jamie Miller gives fans high fives as he leads the team onto the field.

Jacob Posner and Max Garfinkel

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With 20 seconds on the clock, lower, middle and high schoolers, along with parents and alumni, screamed and cheered in the face of Latin’s two-point lead. Spirit remained strong during the opening festivities of the refurbished Jackman field despite U-High varsity soccer team’s defeat.

The Lab community gathered on Sept. 15 for the grand opening of Jackman Field, which included two U-High soccer games against Latin, field games and a screening of “Moana.”

During the varsity game, which U-High lost 3-1, fans filled the bleachers, overflowing into a grassy strip along the area where a new track will be installed in the next couple of days.

“There’s a lot of people here and we get to see this community really getting together,” Shiva Menta, all-school president, said.

Tiffany Flowers, a member of the newly-formed Spirit Council, said volunteers handed out over 500 spirit towels for the crowd to cheer with and bring home to commemorate the event. She added that David Ribbens, athletics director, called it the largest crowd he’d seen at a Lab sports game in 15 years.

According to Ms. Flowers, the council’s aim is to unite the Lab community and raise spirit at events.

“This is a blueprint for spirit days going forward,” which might include events involving Model UN or robotics, Ms. Flowers said.

Nicholas Beach, a junior, said he became really emotionally invested in the game because of the Lab-Latin rivalry.

“This is our house, and we’re really kind of uniting,” Nicholas said. “Lab spirit has always been an issue, but everyone’s coming together and it’s great to see.”

After winning the junior varsity game 2-1, co-captain Sohil Manek said the turf allows for smoother and faster play. This makes slide-tackles more dangerous, but lowers the risk of ankle injuries.

“It’s a lot better — I’m not gonna lie,” he said. “Jackman had the famous Jackman bounce, which made it unpredictable where the ball would go but this is nice — you can tell where the passes are and passes are faster. It’s just a nice field to play on.”

Junior Stanley Shapiro, right-wing on the varsity team, said playing on a turf field fits the team’s style and will be helpful for future games.

Despite being scheduled, there was no phoenix mascot at the games, much to the crowd’s dismay. Senior Marc Mulligan, who will wear the phoenix costume for future games, said because of communication issues with the University, he could not get the costume for this game.

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Spirited, whole-day event marks reopening of Jackman Field