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State High Little Lions Take Down Cumberland Valley 33-21 In Memorable Beaver Stadium Classic

It was a cold, rainy day at Beaver Stadium, where the State College Little Lions and the Cumberland Valley Eagles played some high school football as part of the Beaver Stadium Classic. It was a big game for both teams, as they played in their final game of the season in the home of the Nittany Lions. The crowd of 5,681 fans made the games an experience both teams will remember forever.

For the Little Lions, this game was much more than a regular season game. It was Senior Day. During the pregame festivities, senior cheerleaders, football players, and team managers walked onto their field with their families. The students and other Little Lion fans in the stands cheered loudly at every name that was called. At least 10 of those seniors are hoping to come to Penn State next fall.

During the first half of the game, it was all Cumberland Valley. On the field, the Eagles controlled the time of possession the entire half. They only let the Little Lions have one drive the entire first quarter. Unforced errors also hurt State High throughout the first half. Two bad snaps leading to fumbles, a pick-six, and countless three-and-outs made the half seem like it would never end for head coach Matt Lintal’s side.

“We were a little tense to start,” Lintal said. “We were all tense to start — the coaches, the players, everyone. Once we settled in, we were able to relax and make some big plays.”

On top of that, Cumberland Valley fans were way louder than those rooting for State College. While they only made up a minority of the crowd, Cumberland Valley’s supporters were much louder than the home crowd. The only time they were not louder during the half was when State College finally scored its first touchdown of the afternoon with 3:52 left in the second quarter.

It’s a testament to the Cumberland Valley fans who drove two hours to State College — the home of notoriously passionate football fans — to be louder than the locals. The fans made a noticeable impact on the game, as it seemed like the sections went back and forth for who could be the loudest.

As the game went into halftime, the State High marching band performed a “year in review” set of songs. They ended their performance with a special seniors-only performance of “Thriller” by Michael Jackson — with the famous dance and everything. The band got the State High fans hype as the game transitioned to the second half.

The second half was all State High. Big plays led to the Little Lions pulling ahead of the Eagles, and by the end of the game they won 33-21. The students of State College Area High School were chanting “I Believe That We Will Win” up until the final whistle blew, pumping up their team as they wrapped up the regular season.

After the game ended and the teams shook hands, the Little Lions went over to the fans and joined them in singing their Alma Mater — a tradition that matches up with Penn State’s own.

“It kind of gave me an idea of what college is going to feel like,” State High senior Lokey Howell said. Multiple other players echoed that statement, as they felt the environment was something that they wanted to be apart of for their college careers.

It’s definitely a special feeling playing in a stadium that houses 107,000 students, alumni, and families every week. The result was a good one for State High, but beyond that, the players and families will remember the experience of playing and watching a game in the world’s third-largest stadium for the rest of their lives.

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About the Author

Owen Abbey

Owen Abbey is a sophomore from Annapolis, Maryland, majoring in Secondary Education and minoring in Social Justice in Education. When he is not writing for the blog, he enjoys rooting for the Baltimore Orioles and Ravens, supporting Penn State basketball and softball, watching way too much Netflix, and yes mom, actually doing schoolwork. If you would like to talk about sports or your favorite tv show, the best way to reach out is on Twitter @theowenabbey. All other compliments may be sent to [email protected]

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