Despite limitations, fans still cheer on teams at state championship games

Published: Nov. 23, 2020 at 12:37 AM CST
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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (KCRG) - Normally, there aren’t many empty seats at the UNI Dome during state championship week, but this year there were thousands empty seats. The recent surge in COVID-19 cases forced the Iowa High School Athletic Association to limit the amount of fans at the stadium.

Last week during the semi-finals, up to 2,400 people were allowed. The association only gave out two tickets per player during the last week’s championship round.

For many fans, including Waukon’s Amy Welch, she was just excited to see her son, Creed, play in his final game.

“To be here, either way, it’s his last and we’re going to celebrate and just rejoice,” Welch said.

Dannette Hermeier has seen the affects of COVID-19 firsthand being a nurse at Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon, but she also has a son, Walker, on the football team. It was a moment she wasn’t going to miss.

“We’re busy at Waukon hospital,” Hermeier said. “The nurses are tired and we’re tired, but on the other hand, this is an important time for us and our kids. And I don’t know any nurse in the United States that would’ve wanted this taken away from them. We’re blessed.”

Despite only a limited number of tickets, the Waukon community still came together. Several sophomore parents gave up their tickets to parents with juniors and seniors on the team, which allowed extra family members to attend Friday’s championship game.

“So we were very fortunate to have Creed’s brother and sister be able to come and that was like Christmas morning hearing that,” said Welch.

Waukon defeated Central Lyon/George-Little Rock in the Class 2A championship game, 28-14. It was the Indians’ second state title in program history.

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