Are Students Allowed Back Into the Student Section?

Kim Reynolds’ new rules on spectator limits could mean the Dowling student section could be full once again.


Tom Donahue

The JV1 girls team before playing their fellow West Des Moines rival, Valley

Eleanor Meek, Staff Writer

With Kim Reynolds’ new proclamation on January 6th, all spectator limitations were lifted for high school sporting events. Though Dowling didn’t lift their limitations, they did change them. 


We all know that the students at Dowling Catholic are missing the environment created in student sections, but with COVID-19, it isn’t safe for students to be within that close of proximity to each other. Not only are the students missing the games, so are parents and siblings, considering there has been a two ticket limit for each player. Now that Kim Reynolds has lifted the limitations, students can once again fill the stands, or so we thought.


Dowling hasn’t fully opened their doors for sporting events. Instead, they changed the two ticket per player limit to however many people are in the household. This applies to boys and girls basketball, wrestling, cheerleading, and dance.


The players were excited to have the stands filled with more people, especially more family members, since only two could come before.


“I’m super happy that my whole family can come to my games now. My brothers have been disappointed by not being able to come with my mom to my games and having to stay home and watch the livestream,” Varsity Player Olivia Spracklin (11) said.


Fans can be a very important part of how a team plays. Not having a full crowd has been a challenge for those who are so used to people cheering them on. 


“Fans are a big factor at games for just overall motivation and energy for a team, so not having them there, we’ve had to put in extra energy on the bench and the court to get our team really fired up,” Spracklin said. “I think we’ve adjusted well to not having fans at games, but it will definitely be a good day when the stands are packed again!” 


Although Sparacklin wants the stands to be filled again, she understands the risks of COVID-19 and doesn’t think it’s what the school needs right now.


“While having a full student section would be fun and exciting, it’s just not what is safest for Dowling and the community. I hope we can get COVID numbers down and under control enough that students are able to come see us play at Dowling and at other schools,” Spracklin said.


Even though Dowling has taken advantage of the new rules regarding COVID-19, not all schools have. Dowling players still only have a two ticket limit when they are visitors at other schools. 


“It’s frustrating only having two tickets, but I understand the caution and want to maintain social distancing, so I agree with the rule” Spracklin said.

The JV1 girls team before they won their game against Urbandale. (Eleanor Meek)

Not only do players want the student section to be filled again, but so do the students. 


“Yes, I do miss the student section. The thing I miss the most is being all together and cheering with my friends and doing all the themes for the games,” Reagan James (11) said.


But hopefully next year, the stands can be filled once again, and once they are, James said she wouldn’t miss a game.


“I will definitely take advantage of the student section for my senior year by going to all the games I can,” James said. “I can’t wait to cheer on all my friends again!”