MISSOULA, Mont. - Friday night high school football games are always exciting, but making things even more exciting for Missoula Hellgate this week is the fact they get to play their homecoming game inside Washington Grizzly Stadium this Friday, September 27th.
The Knights will be looking for their first win of the season as the host Billings Senior.
Originally Hellgate was slated to play an afternoon game Friday, because Missoula Big Sky will also be home. But with the Griz football team on the road (at Northern Arizona) this weekend, Knights head coach R.L. Boyles wanted to ensure his seniors got a true homecoming experience under the lights. Of course that night game experience will be made even more special playing inside one of the top stadiums in all of FCS college football.
"It's a great playing surface; the kids get to play on the turf which they don't get to do around here much," said Boyles. "And it's going to be exciting, it's homecoming week so there's a lot of things going on and we're jacked up I know the kids are excited."
This will be the second time a high school game has taken place under the new lights, which were installed about a year and a half ago. Last year it was Missoula Sentinel and Billings Skyview who were the first squads to play under those lights, even before the Montana Grizzly football team ever had.
"Actually playing a real game is going to be huge you know," said senior Kole Swartz about the game this week. "It's like every kid's dream in this town to get an opportunity to play in the stadium and now we actually get to do it."
"I grew up watching the Grizzlies play you know, I went to almost every home game since I was born," added senior Andy Nemec. "So looking down at the field and thinking I would love to play there someday… you know it's going to be great playing out there on the turf."