POWELL, Tennessee — After winning a state title in 2018, the Powell Lady Panthers had waited to play on its new field in 2019.
Flooding from a nearby river covered the field with nearly five feet of water back in late February, though, causing thousands of dollars in damage just one week before the season started.
Tons of work and more than a month later, the team was finally able to hold its first home game on April 11 against the Central Bobcats. Powell run-ruled that game 15-0.
"I'm so proud of each and every one of the girls with all we've been through until now. We've got more games to go, and I'm excited about that," Senior Allyson Farr said.
After the flooding, the team gathered at the field, even during days off from school, for a chance to clean things up.
"We don't need workouts anymore, this is our workout!" joked senior Haley Schultz. She and nearly the entire team spent many afternoons shoveling mud and scrapping broken fences, trying to salvage what they can for the rebuilding process.
"It was down right field line about four to five feet high in the outfield, it was about three feet up against our back stop, but it was a pretty swift current that did most of the damage," said head coach Jeff Inman.
"Honestly, I was just more upset about our brand new fence that was completely destroyed," said Schultz. "I'm just curious... when we'll be back or how much money it's going to take to get us to play on our field again."
In terms of money, Inman estimated it would cost about $6,000 just to replace the dirt. Playing on the field again was expected to take some time. Most home games in March were moved and the team had been practicing at a local park until they could finally return.
The team stayed positive through it all, laughing and smiling as they worked.
"We just got to do something, it's their field, they helped build it, they helped work on it, you know we can't just sit and see it how it was," said Inman.