Providence and Hope Academy’s football teams were forced to hit the ground and take cover from gunshots early in the Celtics’ 56-14 win against Hope Academy on Friday.
“The game had just started and there were some shots a block or two away,” Providence coach Mark Coglianese said. “We were never threatened, but it was the safe thing to do. We waited for the police to give us the all clear.”
Hope Academy plays its home games at Altgeld Park on the west side.
“It’s something we’ve never been through,” Coglianese said. “The kids were a little shaken, but we were reaffirmed that everything was ok.”
“The kids were scared,” Hope Academy coach Matt Kelly said. “But it isn’t something that is a total surprise to them. Unfortunately where we are at, it is the west side, there is violence and crime and shootings. But it is the first time I’ve ever experienced something like that.”
Kelly said it is the first time any type of incident has happened since the team has played at Altgeld Park.