It’s game on for the Eastwood Troopers as they go up against the Plano Senior Wildcats next week.
Just a day after the Plano School District announced it had canceled Plano Senior’s game against Eastwood — Plano ISD had a change of heart.
Plano’s reason for cancelling the game was because of safety concerns following the Walmart shooting. The district recieved a lot of backlash for their decision to cancel the game not only from locals, but from El Paso City leaders as well.
“I was really livid. I felt our kids were being punished,” said District 7 City Representative Henry Rivera.
Rivera wasn’t alone in feeling angry over the game cancellation.
“You cancelling a game and the kids get impacted on top of what already had happened? You’re just sending the wrong message on so many fronts,” said El Paso City Manager Tommy Gonzalez.
Gonzales heard about the canellation after getting a call from reps Henry Rivera and Claudia Ordaz.
He immediately contacted the Plano City Manager to ask the reason behind the cancellation.
“I was told it was because of security,” said Gonzalez.
City represetative Rivera was baffled by that response and did not believe it was a good enough reason to cancel a game that meant so much to not only the students but the community as well.
“For safety reasons? I mean what did she think was going to happen? Our kids take revenge? Our kids just wanted to play football,” said Rivera.
Gonzalez then decided to asked El Paso Police Chief Greg Allen to call the state to ask the director of all the DPS and Texas rangers if they would provide security for the game. The response was a quick yes!
“So I then contacted the city manager of Plano and said that we’ll take care of security and the game should be back on. Then it was another reason that they came up with,” said Gonzalez.
Gonzalez and Rivera did not give up on trying to get the cancelled game reversed. Instead, Rivera asked Gonzalez if he would call people he knew that were associated with the Dallas Cowboys to see if they would provide a field for the game to be played at that provided plenty of security.
“I contacted the Cowboys and they came through in a big way,” said Gonzalez.
Dallas Cowboys owner, Jerry Jones, agreed to allow the game to be played at “The Star in Frisco”, a practice facility for the Cowboys that also doubles as a high school stadium.
“I think it takes big heart for someone like Jerry Jones to step up and make this thing kinda happen,” said Gonzalez.
Representative Rivera was thankful that his idea was able to turn something negative into something positive.
“When you have an idea, as crazy as it sounds, throw it out there. Because I did. I just threw it out to lake and Mr. Gonzalez caught that big fish,” said Rivera.
The game will be happening Thursday September 5th.
ABC-7 has partnered with Dallas ABC affiliate, WFAA , to broadcast the game live here on ABC-7.