DES MOINES, Iowa — Scoreboards often tell a story and until Monday, the September 7th Hoover High School vs Des Moines North football game’s scoreboard was frozen in time. “It was pretty frightening for me as a person,” said North running back Meshack Wilson. It served as a backdrop to a crime scene after gunfire in a nearby parking lot struck fear in coaches, players and fans leaving the three point game at a standstill with just two minutes and fifteen seconds remaining. Hoover’s football coach, Will Siffin said, “It’s a lot bigger than just a game.”
After three weeks, both schools were determined to let that scoreboard tell a different story and play-on.. “The communities coming together finishing something we started and not allowing negative actions impact what we are here to do,” said North’s head coach Shawn Flannagan.
On-field competition proved Huskies and Polar Bears are still cross-town rivals but a unity picture also proved they have become allies for a cause. Siffin said, “It brings closure to the situation and means a lot to the community and let’s everyone know we are still here and proud of who we are.”
It may have been just two and a half minutes of football but as the clock struck zero, the scoreboard’s final narrative will forever show much more than a 21-18 Hoover victory or a Des Moines. “I think it’s good because it shows people that there is always going to be a brighter side at the end,” said Wilson. Hoover receiver Austin Shearon agreed and added, “We are showing that even though there was a shooting that happened across the street, that you are not going to hold us back from what we love to do.”
No arrests have been made in the shooting investigation. This was Hoover’s first victory of the season. On Friday the Huskies hit the road against Sioux City North. Des Moines North travels to Urbandale.