Columbiana holds city-wide pep rally for Wildcats

By SCOTT MIMS / Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA — Before gathering under the Friday night lights, members of the Columbiana community came together Thursday night for a pep rally honoring the Shelby County Wildcats.

The city-wide pep rally recognized athletes from Shelby County High School, Columbiana Middle School, the city’s Youth League, as well as cheerleaders, band members and more leading up to the 2021-2022 football season.

There was a sense of newness as the rain cleared Thursday night, and this was amplified by the fact that both schools have new leaders in place.

“All in all it’s a great community event, and our boys had fun,” said SCHS head football coach Zeb Ellison, looking forward to his first year at the school. “We got to recognize a lot of our kids, and anytime you can do that it’s a plus. Our kids love it, and we will continue to do it as long as we possibly can.”

The team’s captains, Connor Aderholt and Matt Lansford, were among those recognized at the rally. Many of the Youth League players were practicing, but those who were present came down in front of the crowd.

SCHS Principal Kyle Dudley—also in his first year—said the pep rally is a unique tradition that involves the entire city.

“There aren’t a lot of schools that have this type event, and that’s what makes our school and community so special,” he said. “At the end of the day we are here for our kids, and that’s what all of us are here for, and I think it was very clear at the community pep rally that our community is here to rally behind our kids and our programs. We just really appreciate the support that our community gives us.”

Aug. 20 will be a bye week for Shelby County High School’s varsity football team, and on Friday, Aug. 27 they will face their first opponent at Montevallo. The first home game will be Sept. 3 versus Sipsey Valley.