Sturgeon Composite High School's football team is in high "spirits" going into the last few weeks of the season.
The team currently sits at the top of the Gilfillan Division undefeated with a 4-0 record. While other programs struggled to assemble a team due to various factors, including COVID-19, Sturgeon saw a larger than expected turnout of players at its August training camp.
With 50 players, the Spirits have dominated the field; they started strong, defeating their division rivals, St. Albert, 38-10.
The season has not been without its challenges, however. Head coach Chad Hill explained COVID-19 had forced a few schedule changes as well as learning how to mix and match players and their positions when team members are unable to play due to illness.
"It's a new challenge every week, and every game has been very different," Hill explained. "Second week of the season was one of those games where we were missing... I think it was 14 players we had out. Some due to injury and a lot due to sickness where we had to tell them to stay away."
That second-week game against Ardrossan resulted in Sturgeon's 13-10 win, with many players playing out of their position. Hill pointed to the game as one of the season's highlights for the adversity the team overcame to win.
"Week three was a real battle with Lillian Osbourne; they're a very physical football team. [It was a] defensive battle, we came out on top 10-6,"
A 28-0 win against M.E. LaZerte was another highlight of Hill's; adding the shutout was a testament to the Spirits' strong defence.
With playoffs set to start at the end of this month, Hill isn't thinking about championships just yet, opting to focus on the day-to-day and the challenges that each week brings. First place will be put on the line at Friday's (Oct.9) game against St. Francis Xavier, currently ranked second in the division.
The game kicks off at 5:00 p.m. at Larry Olexiuk Field.