MHS homecoming reset for Thursday

Bill Spinks
Midlothian Mirror

After a two-week absence from the gridiron, the Midlothian Panthers will make their return on Thursday night against Birdville at MISD Multipurpose Stadium in the District 4-5A (I) opener for both teams.

The Panthers (2-0) two weeks ago were just a few hours away from kicking off against Wichita Falls Rider when the MISD athletic department received word of a positive COVID-19 test within the team and the game was canceled. MHS last week had a scheduled open date.

“We used the bye week to get healthy and get a little break,” MHS head coach Doug Wendel said in his weekly newsletter. “We feel we used it wisely and are re-energized to start district play! We have made some adjustments within our program to better ensure safety and social distancing.”

Those changes include keeping each of the Panther football teams as separated from one another as possible; dismissing teams and position groups at different times to reduce the number of people in the locker room at any given time; and encouraging athletes to go home as soon as practice is over instead of showering at school.

“We have talked extensively for 3 months about the importance of all of us doing our part, ‘holding the rope,’ and sacrificing,” Wendel said. “If we want to continue to play we will have to remain steadfast in our resolve and not become subject to ‘Covid Fatigue.’ We need your help!!! Stay safe and make good decisions concerning contact with others, eating out, etc.”

The Rider game was to be the Panthers’ homecoming, but Thursday’s game against Birdville will complete the festivities. It will also be “Pink Out” for the Panthers in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Birdville (1-0) has not played since Oct. 9, a 21-14 win against Crowley. Its first two games against Everman and Haltom were canceled because of COVID-19, and the Hawks, like everyone else in the district, had an open date before the start of district play.

Thursday’s game will kick off at 7 p.m. and will be preceded by the announcement of the homecoming court at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are available online at the MISD athletics website and will be not sold at the gate on game night.