Ready for battle: Alabaster shows up for 2019 Warrior Day

By SETH HAGAN | Special to the Reporter

ALABASTER – The sun continued to shine as the week ended and Thompson fans gathered at Warrior Stadium Saturday, August 10, for the annual Warrior Day.

The event marked two weeks until the beginning of the Warriors’ 2019 football season as the team looks to follow up one of the best runs in school history and their furthest playoff run since moving to Class 7A five years ago.

Over a thousand fans filled the home side of the stadium and cheered as the varsity ran onto the field for stretching and drills. The team donned helmets with shirts and shorts as they went through their routine.

The main idea of the day, Head Coach Mark Freeman explained, was for the squad to get used to typical game day preparation as the season approaches. Freeman was quick to point out what the support of the fans means to the program and how it feeds back into the lives of the students-athletes.

“The support from the crowd is huge, we have great support, but tickled for everybody who was involved and it was a great day and I appreciate everyone who was able to come out and support it,” Freeman said. “We have some good home games coming up and the revenue produced from those games is predominantly what we use to provide for our kids. The food and nutrition and video and everything else that we do are supported by our home crowd and Warrior Day is a big part of that as well.”

The band took the field as the varsity concluded its practice and treated the home crowd to a series of their upcoming show this season. It’s something the group has been working on during the summer months throughout band camp.

If the performance is any indication, Warrior Stadium will continue to be an entertaining atmosphere as Thompson plays host to 7A powers Hoover, Mountain Brook and Foley this Fall.

Thompson’s cheerleaders also performed several routines in between the action on the field along with their work during the scrimmages. Alabaster City Schools’ Superintendent Wayne Vickers was pleased with the event and proud of the many people who worked to put it on.

“We want to thank everyone involved who made Warrior Day such a positive experience for our community,” he said. “You know this is a city-wide event and we had a crowd here at 10 a.m. to see the varsity and got a chance to hear our Marching Southern Sounds, who did a fabulous job. Our cheerleaders have been here all day doing an amazing job. I just want to thank our community for coming out and making this a special day for the city of Alabaster and Alabaster City Schools.”

The middle school, freshmen and youth team scrimmages rounded out the day and set the stage for the Go Gold Bowl on Aug. 24 where Thompson will host a doubleheader at Warrior Stadium to help raise support for Children’s Hospital of Alabama and the Elaine Roberts Foundation.

Thompson Athletic Director Vincent Pitts talked about the much-anticipated event and the chance it gives Thompson to further their community outreach.

“Well most importantly it’s an opportunity to help people,” Pitts said. “We appreciate the partnership with the Warrior Foundation and our presenting sponsor Full Moon BBQ, and we’re excited to welcome Clay-Chalkville, Dothan and Davidson to Alabaster. It should be a day of great football. Excited about that, but more excited for the opportunity to help people.”

Clay-Chalkville and Dothan will square off in game one of the doubleheader at 3:30 p.m. with Thompson and Davidson kicking off at 7:30 p.m. The two games will mark each team’s season opener for the 2019 football season.

Photos available at Shelbycountyphotos.com.