While I am a bigger soccer fan than anything, I love all things sports. I especially love High School and College sports. There is a purity to the way that they play the game that you will never find in professional sports. They play for the love of the game, not for their next contract or endorsement. It really is a beautiful thing to watch

I liked to follow any and all high school sports back in Seattle. While, yes, we had a lot of schools that were big enough to be 4 and 5 A status (2000+ students), we also has a lot of smaller high schools in the state. Even with around 40 B status schools (less than 400 students), they always played full 11-a-side football.

My boss came up to me last week and asked me to take the Hummer to the Shiloh Christian playoff game. I was all for it. It would give me a chance to get a look at a local football team before the season ended. First off, Miller Field is a GORGEOUS stadium. Only the biggest high schools in Seattle has a stadium like that to play in, and most of the time they had to share it with another school.  When I arrived, it was early in warm-ups. I saw a lot of kids out there getting ready as I have seen a million times before. I stepped down onto the field to take some pics just as they broke out to start running some plays to warm up. As I watched, something just didn't seem right to me. I couldn't put my finger on it at the time, but ignored it for the time being.

Warm-ups ended and Starting Lineups were announced. The first kid would run through, then the second, and so on. Then the 9th kid ran through, and the team followed.

What? Where are the other 2 players?

I turned to my coworker and asked. That's when I learned of 9-a-side football.

If I wasn't such an active follower of sports, I wouldn't have noticed a difference. The kids of Divide County and Shiloh Christian fought it out as if they were full 53 man, 11-a-side teams. In the end, Shiloh prevailed, and moved onto the Semi-Finals tomorrow night.

Who knew there was more than one way to play Football?

If you want to listen to the Shiloh game, our sister station Cool 98.7 will carry it live.