Community rallies around Stanley-Boyd football team ahead of state tournament

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STANLEY, Wis. (WEAU) -- How do you describe the excitement leading up to a trip to the state football tournament?

"It's loud."


"Everybody has been cheering let's go, fight and win."

Those were some of the responses students gave at a pep rally on Wednesday, as the district gets ready to send off its football players to the state tournament in Madison.

"It was cool to see everybody with school spirit," said student Laura Bauer.

She and the pep team put this celebration together. There were signs, songs and even some advice from past players who have been on state turf.

"Being at Camp Randall, being on the turf, those are the memories that always stay with you," said Tom Hause, a former Stanley-Boyd Football player.

It has been more than a decade since the team went to state. The last time was in 1996. Ronny Ponick does not remember that tournament since he was born in 1996, but will remember tomorrow's for the rest of his life.

"Especially growing up as little kids and dreaming of making it to the big stage and it's finally here," he said.

Everywhere you go around town, you will see signs rooting on the Orioles. Even at the grocery store, everyone has been talking about the big day.

"They are very happy about us going, it's been awhile," said Russ Judnick. His son played in the 1991 state tournament.

"It doesn't happen very often, they did a great job and I hope they can do it again tomorrow," he said.

Out on the practice field the team is spending one last night under the lights and prepping for the big day.

"We're excited for this opportunity and the guys are really focused on what they have to do tomorrow, and hopefully come out and play our best football," said Head Coach Jeff Koenig.

The team is standing tall knowing their town is behind them.

"The community coming together really means a lot to us because they're rooting for us on the other end, so we're doing it for them too," Ronny Ponick.

The last time the team went to state was in 1996. They lost that game to Columbus but one two other titles in 1995 and 1991.

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