Sarasota Christian School's football game Monday seemed normal

The Blazers posted a 42-12 victory over the visitors from Land O'Lakes in an 8-man Sunshine State Athletic Conference on Monday Night in Sarasota.
The Blazers posted a 42-12 victory over the visitors from Land O'Lakes in an 8-man Sunshine State Athletic Conference on Monday Night in Sarasota.
Sarasota Christian's Colton Loftus stiff arms an Academy at the Lakes player during the first half of Monday's 8-man Sunshine State Athletic Conference game at the Blazers field.
Sarasota Christian's Colton Loftus stiff arms an Academy at the Lakes player during the first half of Monday's 8-man Sunshine State Athletic Conference game at the Blazers field.

SARASOTA – It was on the outfield of a baseball field lined by the coach.

The scoreboard for the most part was functionable.

The public address system worked and was equipped with music coming out of four speakers.

Fans lined the field on the home side and there were a smattering of fans on the visiting side.

OK, so it was 8-man in the Sunshine State Athletic Conference, but it was football.

And it seemed normal.

After what this area went through last week, it was heaven when Sarasota Christian School took the field against visiting Academy at the Lakes out of Land O’Lakes.

Sarasota Christian coach Jacob Spenn speaks with quarterback Ben Milliken during Monday evening's game against Academy at the Lakes in an 8-man Sunshine State Athletic Conference football game at the Blazers field.
Sarasota Christian coach Jacob Spenn speaks with quarterback Ben Milliken during Monday evening's game against Academy at the Lakes in an 8-man Sunshine State Athletic Conference football game at the Blazers field.

“Just for kids they need to get back to normal,” Blazers coach and director of athletics Jacob Spenn said. “These kids already lost a year of their lives to COVID. They needed this.”

Monday Night Football after the misery, trauma and damage caused by Hurricane Ian last week was just what the area ordered.

Of course, this area was not hit as hard as Charlotte, Lee and Collier counties which suffered devastating damage. Schools down that way will not be able to host sporting events for a while.

“I feel for those kids down south,” Spenn said. “They’re looking at: Are we going to play again in the fall, whether it’s football or volleyball or whatever?”

Spenn spoke with Sarasota Christian head of school Joe Stokes last week to see if Monday night’s game was feasible and possible.

“He felt the same way,” Spenn said. “If we could get out there and play, we need to do that for the kids.”

The Blazers practices Friday and Saturday were more like get togethers among the players. All except one of the players, whose family house suffered extensive roof damage, was on hand.

“Everybody else was here excited and wanting to do something,” Spenn said. “They’re tired of being cramped up. They got together and they were all talking.

“They weren’t real focused practices, but they were out here.”

And they were out there again Monday night. And that made it seem normal.

Sarasota Christian 42 Academy at the Lakes 12

At: Sarasota Christian.

Top players: SC, Travis Miller (7 catches, 154 yards, 4 TDs), Ben Milliken (20-of-35, 381 yards, 6 TDs), Randall Collins (7 catches, 144 yards, 2 TDs),

Records: Sarasota Christian 3-1, Academy at the Lakes 1-4

Next: Sarasota Christian at Lakeside Christian on Friday in Clearwater

Dennis Maffezzoli is the deputy sports editor for the Sarasota Herald-Tribune and chief reporter for Sarasota Herald-Tribune and HTpreps covering Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte counties. Support local journalism by subscribing. 

Follow @maffsports on Twitter

This article originally appeared on Sarasota Herald-Tribune: Sarasota Christian School's football game Monday seemed normal