The Burro host first home game in three years for a night of fans, family and football

NASHVILLE – On Friday night, the Hillsboro Burros hosted a home football game on their own field for the first time since 2018. Newly constructed after three years of construction the John Koen Stadium opens to a capacity crowd. After a long three years and a grand total of 90 million dollars worth of renovations to the school and athletic facilities, the Burros (0-2) were able to play host to the Smyrna Bulldogs (1-1).

The atmosphere was electric well before kickoff, as students, teachers, parents, and fans began arriving and tailgating over an hour before the commencement of the game. There was no small amount of grilling, laughter, and anticipation at and around the brand new football stadium.

As the long-awaited kickoff grew closer, the excitement and intensity magnified. Present at the game were spectators of all ages, ranging from little kids to elderly adults. But perhaps the most accurate descriptor of the atmosphere before the game was the grandiose student section that was forming.

Students in this section were complete with face paint, green and gold attire, and a flood of hyped-up and outrageously adrenalized students. The entire stadium continued to fill to the brim with both people and an elongated feeling of suspense, which was itching at every fiber of the Hillsboro community until the ball was finally kicked off at just past 7 PM.

Earlier in the season, the Burros’ football squad played visitor in two road games: a week one 49-28 loss to Pope John Paul II and a week two 33-13 defeat at the hands of Station Camp.

The 2021 Hillsboro team is a young team in both players and coaches, so some early-season struggles were not unanticipated. However, the two losses to start the season did not halter any enthusiasm from Burro nation.

Cheers rang out from the bleachers every time a play went Hillsboro’s way and jeers followed any controversial call against the Burros. The student section was electric from start to finish, with consistent chants being shouted out in unison from the first snap of the ball through the last.

As for the game itself, Smyrna jumped out to an early lead with a touchdown on their first drive. After a stalemate period of punts between the two teams, the Bulldogs got on the board again with a field goal just before halftime, putting the Burros in a 10-0 hole going into the break.

The game’s momentum swung even more in the Bulldogs’ favor as they would add two more touchdowns in the 3rd quarter. Hillsboro did manage to avoid the shoutout with a long touchdown pass in the 4th quarter, but ultimately fell 24-7.

Although the Burros were not victorious, the atmosphere surrounding the game was a breath of fresh air for the Hillsboro community. It had been a long time since there was a gameday on Hillsboro’s own field, and if the first home game is any indicator, the Burros will be able to count on the support of their fans throughout the season.

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East Magnet High School visits the John Koen Stadium Friday, September 10, 2021. Game time 7:00 pm.

Tickets are now purchased online through Go-Fan and well before the game began it was evident that it would be a sold-out game.