This year, the numbers were up again, with more than 400 students turning out for fall sports programs, though the number trying out for football was actually down slightly, largely due to a large group of graduating seniors on last year’s squad.
Athletic Director Tom O’Brien is expecting an even bigger jump in the number of students participating in winter and spring sports.
The cut in sports fees is certainly a factor.
The fee is down to $100 per sport this year, with a family maximum of $600 a year, down from $850.
That’s been a godsend for parents like Maureen Zuber. It will cost her just $50 more for two of her children, Stephanie and Nicholas, to play three sports this year than it did for her oldest, Zachary, to play two sports two years ago.
The excitement around Haverhill High sports is growing along with participation.
“When I first got here, students talked about a lack of school spirit” O’Brien said. “Students who go to the games see the great atmosphere that comes with winning, and I think they want to be a part of that.”
Now that’s something to cheer about.