Football Teams Hit Arrowhead Gridiron for a Good Cause

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Ray-Pec High practices for Friday's game against Joplin.

It’s just about any high school football players dream; to play on the same field as some of the best athletes in the country.

But for seniors Nick Guerera, 18, and Cameron Green, 17, that dream will be a reality this Friday when their team, the Raymore-Peculiar Panthers battle the Joplin Eagles, on the field at Arrowhead Stadium.

“It’s pretty mind-blowing,” said Nick.  “It’s a big dream of mine playing in a stadium like this.”

“We’re doing a lot of drills,” said Cameron.  “Making sure we have everything down perfect. We’re doing every play to perfection.”

The goal of the game is to raise money to help rebuild tornado ravaged Joplin.

“It feels really good to know we can help Joplin in their time of need,” said Cameron.

Proceeds from Friday’s game will go to the Joplin recovery fund which is designed to get teachers, students and the community as a whole back on their feet after the May 22 tornado.  It was make possible thanks to the Kansas City Chiefs.  It’s the first time the team has done anything like that.

“I don’t think there’s a loser in this and  think that’s what’s great,” said Ray-Pec coach Tom Kruse.

While the fundraiser is for Joplin,  Kruse said fans should not expect his team to take it easy on Joplin.

“We have the opportunity to do something great for Joplin, yet we also haven’t lost sight of the fact that this is a football game,” said Kruse.  “We have to find a way to win.”

After all a lot is at stake.  The team that wins Friday has the chance to advance to the playoffs.

“We still support the cause but it’s still a regular football game for us,” said Cameron.  “We’re going out here to play and we’re going to play to win.”

The gates at Arrowhead Stadium will open at 4 p.m. Friday and the game starts at 7 p.m.  Tickets can be purchased through Joplin High School, Raymore-Peculiar High School, the Arrowhead Stadium Box Office or Ticketmaster.  Student tickets are $5 and general admission tickets are $15.  Parking is $15.  Ticket, parking and concession proceeds will benefit the Joplin Recovery Fund.

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