Sat. Aug 13th, 2022

Leesville students have a huge decision to make as the football season kicks off. Students can either pregame with Grill Team at Springdale pool or Bake Team at Dominion Park pool.

Matt McNiel and Megan Pendergraft play cornhole before the Green Hope game at Grill Team. Other students played football and ate burgers while they tailgated in preparation for the game.

This is the first year the Bake Team, led by Nicholas Mancini, is pre-gaming before Leesville football games. “Bake Team is all about having a fun time with friends and hanging out,” said Mancini.

Mancini gave his insight into why he created Bake Team. “Obviously there are cliques in our high school. They are unavoidable. Our senior class doesn’t hang out as one united group, so I didn’t think it would be a big deal if we pregamed separately as well.”

During the average Bake Team there is music, burgers, friends, brownies and other baked goods.

Despite the positive energy Mancini has tried to put out, many seniors are very skeptical of Bake Team. Grill Team supporters would say that Bake Team was created to divide the senior class. Mancini would strongly disagree.

Even though Grill Team is held at a different location, much of the same activities take place.

“The goal of Grill Team is to keep the tradition alive and get pumped up for the game,” said Abby Davis, senior. The addition of Bake Team to the Leesville community has stirred up a lot of commotion, especially among Grill Team.

“I feel like Bake Team is a divider. It has divided the classes instead of being together before football games. It has become a competition between Grill Team and Bake Team,” said Davis.

Addressing the critics, Mancini said, “Haters gon’ hate; I’m still going to do my thing.”

Davis and other Grill Team leaders have approached Mancini and asked him to combine the two tailgating groups but Mancini declined.

Gabe Romero, senior member of Bake Team, said it best: “After all, both teams have the same goal. We just want to get stoked for the game. Whether you choose Bake Team or Grill Team, keep in mind that we are all part of the pride.”

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