Editorial – Support All The Teams, Not Just a Few

(Adobe Stock photo.)

March 3, 2023 – Editorial by Joshua Ross, Managing Sports Editor – Hingham Anchor

High school playoff’s is the best time of year.  Months of workouts, practices, and games culminate in a winner-take-all tournament that every athlete looks forward to all season. For most seniors it will be the last time they ever play that particular sport in any organized fashion.  

A three-week window where they get one last shot to play in front of family, friends, and fans.

Except, very few teams actually experience that.  They are almost solely the boys teams and only a small subset the most popular sports.  

Last night, hundreds of people traveled 40 minutes away to watch the boys hockey team take on King Phillips in Canton.  The Hingham section was overflowing.  The atmosphere, like almost every boys hockey game, was electric.  The game not so much.  They won easily 7-1 and most people left after the second period.

Two nights ago, the girls hockey team played in Hingham and the rink was empty.  The game was twice as exciting than the boys game and no one saw it. A handful of students were there.  The same handful that are always there, mostly made up of the girls basketball team.  They support their fellow classmates just as members of girls hockey team were the only fans to show up for the girls basketball team in Weymouth last week.  

You can’t call yourself a sports town when you only show up and support a small number of sports.  

Over the last three years, I have attended more Hingham High School sporting events than anyone, except for Coach Q, and that’s debatable.  I have seen firsthand the discrepancy in attendance for these games, both in the regular season and playoffs.  This is not a COVID thing.  It’s a cultural thing.

I am well aware that there are sports that just aren’t practical to attend.  No one is traveling 2.5 hours to cheer on the ski team in NH on Saturdays.  Although we probably should, they were really good this year.  Watching gymnastics in a small gym with no space is not ideal.  And traveling into Boston on Friday nights to the “Reggie”, parking a mile away, to watch winter track is at best inconvenient.  

There are, however, no excuses not to go to home games for the girls if you go for the boys.  Here’s a little secret, the girls games are just as entertaining and high quality as the boys, sometimes more so.  This year alone, the girls have more than doubled up the boys on Patriot League MVPs – Nora Schultze in volleyball, Abbey Kennedy in field hockey, Sophie Reale in soccer, Clara Bodnar in Swimming, Caroline Doherty in hockey, Liam McBride in basketball and Carson Erick in golf.  

There are countless individual achievements throughout the year that are too numerous to list off.  One example from just last week – Hingham wrestling, one of the most successful programs in the state over the past decade, sent three people to the state championships.  Sophomore Mia Dineen finished the highest on the team with a second place finish – in the entire state of Massachusetts.  

The girls win just as many Patriot League Championships as the boys, if not more.  Last November, on National Letter of Intent signing day, we did ceremonies for five student athletes intending on playing in Division 1. Four of them were girls.

For the fourth year in a row, Hingham has won the Boston Globe’s Holmes Award.  This is for the best high school athletic program in the state.  No one has won it twice in row, let alone four times.  This isn’t an award for just the popular boys teams. Every varsity win counts.  A win for girls tennis counts as much as win for boys lacrosse. 

I’m not taking anything away from boys hockey, or football, or any other sport.  I could list three pages worth of amazing moments, achievements, and milestones for all those teams as well.  The point is, in addition to myself, many people were there to witness and celebrate them.

The most fans I’ve ever seen at a game was for the girls soccer state title game this past fall when half the town showed up.   If you ask the players, I bet they tell you having everyone there, celebrating with their friends, taking photos with their littlest fans, was the best part of the experience.  There’s no reason why every team shouldn’t experience something like that, especially during the playoffs.  They’ve earned it.  

People aren’t expected to go to every game.  I get it. I can’t cover the girls hockey game tomorrow night, which is at Pilgrim at 6pm by the way.  No one is forcing anyone to go either.  But, if you are a sports fan, or a Hingham fan, or don’t know a thing about sports but are friends with one of the athletes, or have a young daughter who plays that sport, do yourself a favor and go experience the game.  But more importantly, go support the players.

I promise you won’t be disappointed.  Unless they lose, then you might be a little disappointed.  But in the end it’s not about you.  It’s about the athletes who have sacrificed so much for years to get to soak in the crowds cheering for them and celebrating their achievements, regardless of the sport they play.  

9 thoughts on “Editorial – Support All The Teams, Not Just a Few”

  1. It’s just so exciting to see all our kids compete at this level! Just imagine the confidence that will grow in all with the cheers from many. Thank you, Josh.

  2. Here’s a little secret, the girls games are not just as entertaining and high quality as the boys. I wish that girls sports had the same level off attendance as boys, as a parent of 3 girls, but the level of athleticism for girls sports is much lower than boys sports. It’s why the attendance at WNBA games is a fraction of NBA games.

    • ha ha ha…Ting Yang – this isn’t about pro sports or the WNBA. It is about supporting the athletes in YOUR town. You reply is everything that is wrong with HS sports.

    • I am also a father or 3 girls, as a father I would never call any women in sports unathletic. People who say things like this are the problem. I am sure your Daughters would be ashamed to see this.

  3. Huzzah!

    Ugly day outside….will be nice and dry inside Pilgrim tonight at 6pm.

    Great opportunity to watch some of the best players in the state battle to make it to the next round.

  4. YES to all of the above. BUT as a dad and a supporter of other endeavors at Hingham High School please also be aware of the powerful Arts program, in my experience, ESPECIALLY the drama department. AND the Hingham Hammerheads, TEAM 5000 in the global First Robotics competition is also quite amazing, and was begun by students. There is a LOT going on at HHS! Appreciate it all and you will be happy!


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