EWU gears up for frigid semifinal football game - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

EWU gears up for frigid semifinal football game

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CHENEY, Wash. -

Eastern Washington University is gearing up to play a frigid semifinal football game on Saturday in Cheney against Youngstown State University from Ohio but how is the school keeping their players warm?

"It does take a toll on you. From our end, we just have to be ready for the next thing. Weather is always an issue whether it's good or bad," said EWU Equipment Manager Augie Hernandez.

It's going to be a little extreme on Saturday, that's why Hernandez says they are making sure they're fully prepared to help the players. "We have a cold weather compression top to try and retain the heat to keep them warm," said Hernandez.

The Eagles will use specific headgear to trap the warmth inside like toe warmers for their cleats since their shoes are thin. "We'll also use hand warmers," said Hernandez. When the players hustle off the field, there are parkas that will be draped over them. Not all players will use all of the gear because it really comes down to preference.

They'll also have extra heaters outside for both the Eags and Youngstown so that everyone can stay a little bit warmer.

While the Eagles are preparing for the game, their opponents Youngstown State, made their way to EWU's campus on Friday morning. Three bus loads dropped off the players and staff in Cheney. Being from the Midwest, they've played in extreme temperatures before but nothing like Saturday. "Don't know how this is going to go. We haven't played in a Pacific Time Zone in 16 years or something like that but that was in California, little different weather then up here but we are happy to still be playing and looking forward to a great game tomorrow," said Trevor Parks, Youngstown State University Sports Information Director.

The game kicks off Saturday at 3:30 p.m. For fans coming to the game, the university has set up a warm zone at Reese Court. That will open starting at 1:30 p.m. and then again open during halftime. There will be free hot chocolate and coffee inside. 

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